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Black Sunday turned out to be a public demonstration of green superiority led by the hulking Ben Mbala.
Mbala lived up to his reputation as a menacing force in front of a sea of green, blue and black as the Green Archers thrashed archrival Ateneo Blue Eagles in ruthless fashion, 97-81, last night to complete a first round sweep in the UAAP basketball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Cameroonian import put on a show with 28 points, including several rim rattling dunks that wowed most of the 16,000 fans that included renowned trainer Freddie Roach wearing a La Salle shirt.
He added 13 rebounds and five steals to give La Salle a masterful win that was completed even without coach Aldin Ayo and injured star Jeron Teng.
Ayo served a one-game suspension for attempting to put a pair of eyeglasses at an official against University of the East last Wednesday while Teng is expected to miss at least a week due to an injured ankle.
But even without its biggest personalities, La Salle’s self-proclaimed mayhem was once again in full effect.
The La Salle-Ateneo spectacle overshadowed University of the East’s stunning 64-57 victory over Adamson in the first game. The Red Warriors leaned on Alvin Pasaol and RR de Leon in a fourth quarter turnaround to barge into the win column after a 0-6 start.
UE 64 – Pasaol 13, De Leon 12, Batiller 12, Manalang 7, Varilla 5, Bartolome 5, Olayon 5, Palma 2, Charcos 2, Penuela 2, Derige 2, Abanto 0.
ADAMSON 57 – Sarr 13, Ahanmisi 10, Manganti 8, Espeleta 6, Manalang 5, Ochea 5, Tungcab 5, Bernardo 3, Camacho 2, Mustre 0, Pasturan 0, Ng 0.
Quarters: 7-14; 21-30; 40-45; 64-57.
LA SALLE 97 – Mbala 28, Caracut 14, Tratter 10, Torres 8, Montalbo 8, Rivero R. 8, Melecio 5, Perkins 5, Dyke 4, Baltazar 2, Go 2, Paraiso 2, Rivero P. 1, Sargent 0.
ATENEO 81 – Wong 15, Nieto Ma. 13, Asistio 11, Ravena 11, Mendoza 9, Ikeh 7, Porter 6, Go 5, Babilonia 2, Nieto Mi. 2, Tolentino 0, Verano 0.
Quarters: 20-20; 53-36; 80-58; 97-81.