Ateneo de Manila drew first blood against De La Salle University, 97-86, in the first installment of their yearly rivals series in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Season 77 men’s basketball tournament.
Fourth year guard Kiefer Ravena led their balanced charge with 29 points on a torrid 10-for-19 shooting from the field, included three consecutive triples early in the fourth period that propelled the Blue Eagles through the rest of the way.
But it was the less heralded Von Pessumal that quietly rose to the occasion, scoring 12 points during their first half surge to overcome De La Salle’s hot start in the first period. He finished with a career-best 21 points with seven rebounds and three assists in the ballgame.
Rookie forward Arvin Tolentino proved his worthiness as this season’s top blue-chip prospect, scoring 14 with 10 boards, while ex-Green Archers center Alfonso Gotladera added 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds during the contest.
With the win, Ateneo sends La Salle home with a 0-2 record to start the season, while the Blue Eagles share an early 2-0 lead with National University and University of the East.
On hand for the day’s match-up is veteran FCF lensmen Martin San Diego.