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(Mall of Asia Arena)
2 p.m. – Ateneo vs FEU
4 p.m. – La Salle vs UST
La Salle is definitely not treating University of Santo Tomas lightly as it goes for a third win today in the UAAP basketball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Green Archers enter the 4 p.m. game as favorites to remain unbeaten while also using the Growling Tigers as a stepping stone before their highly-anticipated match with the National University Bulldogs on Sunday.
But La Salle coach Aldin Ayo cautioned that UST could pose a serious threat in his team’s bid to keep its impressive start going.
“We don’t’ take any team for granted in this UAAP,” said Ayo after La Salle posted an 89-71 rout of University of the Philippines last Saturday.
“Isipin mo, UST di nga naglaro ng Filoil (preseason tournament), walang nakasilip dun pero tignan mo kung maglaro, buong-buo. So all teams here in the UAAP are competitive di pwede maging complacent.
“And since you (media) ranked us No. 1, every time they play us, for sure motivated sila and they’re really going to give their best against us,” added Ayo.
UST split its first two games, losing 73-69 to Ateneo in the opener last Sept. 4 before entering the win column with a hard-fought victory over University of the East, 88-87.
Meanwhile, defending champion Far Eastern University and Ateneo square off in the first game at 2 p.m. with the winner taking at least solo third at 2-1.
FEU bounced back from last week’s loss to La Salle by trouncing Adamson, 75-65, while Ateneo is determined to redeem itself falling last Sunday to NU, 70-60.
While pleased with the scattered production from the players filing in the loss of key players from last year’s title-winning side, Tamaraws coach Nash Racela isn’t worried about the lack of a go-to-player in the early goings of the competition.