UST eliminates Ateneo, returns to Final Four

University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers ended a 14 straight final four appearances of the Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles as they defeated them in a do-or-die game, Wednesday, September 18, 2013 held at the Araneta Coliseum, 82-74 to clinch the last final four berth.

The defending 5-peat champions fell short as they say goodbye to their 6-peat campaign and their UAAP season. It was a hot start for the Growling Tigers as they immediately had a 13-point lead against the Blue Eagles, 39-26 at halftime.

But things turned out to be different for UST when Ateneo made their runs and got a 48-45 lead in the third off a Kiefer Ravena 3-pointer. The Growling Tigers stopped the bleeding making shots and ended the third quarter with a 1-point lead, 52-51.

Learning their lesson, UST never looked back to the third and started the fourth quarter aggressively sinking two treys and lay-ups. Ateneo though had a lot of turnovers and were once again left behind by the Tigers building a huge lead again. 

But the defending champions fought hard shooting quick baskets and putting pressure on the in-bounder and the recipient of the ball. UST crucially committed fouls and turnovers which gave life to Ateneo but foul game must be played when time was running down. Jeric Teng sank five crucial free throws in the last minute to complete the Growling Tigers' stunning win and arrange a Final Four showdown with top seed National University.

The scores:

UST 82 - Abdul 25, Teng 17, Daquioag 13, Ferrer 10, Mariano 7, Bautista 6, Sheriff 4, Pe 0, Lo 0, Lao 0

ADMU 74 - Ravena 20, Newsome 13, Elorde 12, Buenafe 9, Pessumal 8, Golla 4, Erram 4, Tolentino 2, Tiongson 2, Capacio 0