Winston hits the clutch as La Salle records first win over Ateneo in five years

La Salle players celebrate at the siren after winning by a margin against rivals Ateneo.

La Salle players celebrate at the siren after winning by a margin against rivals Ateneo.
Tristan Tamayo’s photo /

La Salle hotshot Schonny Winston was looking forward to seeing Ateneo in another chapter of the epic rivalry of both schools. So when D-day arrives, the prolific two-way guardian knows exactly what to do.

Winston excelled in the match against a pair of key jumpers, leading the Blue Archers past the Blue Eagles, 83-78, on Sunday at the UAAP Season 85 men’s basketball tournament.

“It’s definitely been a match on our schedule for a long time, so I’m doing everything I can to win,” Winston said.

Winston went ahead with a short jab that gave them a breath of relief and dashed into a buoy from the corner to give the Archers an easy six lead before La Salle’s defensive crackdown on Ateneo froze victory. .

“We put in more effort this time because this (Ateneo) is a bigger team. We just want to win this game badly, says Winston.

Evan Nelle, instrumental in giving La Salle the lead and restraining rising star Forthsky Padrigao throughout the match, made a pair of free throws to mark victory, the Green Archers’ first time defeating the Great. blues since Game 2 of the Season 80 final that Ateneo won Five years ago.

“I used that as motivation the day before practice. Hats for my boys. We’re really preparing for Ateneo and really working hard,” said La Salle coach Derrick Pumaren. “I told them never to doubt that we can match Ateneo and they showed it in today’s game. ”

The Green Archers’ defense cornered Ange Kouame in key moments. Kouame was at the center of Ateneo’s early charge and finished with 22 points and had 10 attacking goals. More importantly, La Salle’s defense shut down Ateneo’s ability to produce wings.

“We did a good job of containing the paint and defending their trebles. We were able to get Padrigao out of his comfort zone,” Pumaren said. of his 18 shots from the field, including one of 12 from the three-point range.

“Part of the game plan is guarding the perimeter. We’re glad we’ve been able to do that for the past three quarters,” Pumaren said.

Nelle added 10 points for La Salle, his three, and quickly broke through a steal in the fourth half, changing the skin color of the game for good.

In the other game, Jhon Lloyd Clemente and Jhay Baclaan pushed the National University (NU) Bulldogs to a tense 69-63 win over the University of Santo Tomas’ growling tigers.

Clemente sealed NU’s second win in three games by sinking four free throws in the last minute that preserved Baclaan’s dazzling full-game form against his former team.

“We played a really bad game last time. We forget about that Ateneo game and focus on this one,” said Baclaan, who had four times three and posted a similar 16-point result to Clemente.

Nic Cabanero’s three with 10.2 seconds left dragged them into the fourth round, but it turned out his freebbed balls soon proved crucial to the Roaring Tigers.

“We did well in the third quarter, but we need to address our relaxation bias. We can’t do that when we meet the defending champion (University of the Philippines) on Wednesday,” said NU coach Jeff Napa.

Cabanero saved four of his last seven free throws in the waning minutes, after the Tigers pulled back from 18 points and finished with 16.

“We simply lacked the fighting spirit that we had in the first three-quarters of the game after shooting five/16 from the field and five out of eleven charity shots,” Cabanero said.

The Tigers thrived on breaks, but shot 24 of 65 from the floor, including hitting 14 of 16 attempts from outside the arc.

“It was the first time in my coaching career that my team finished with a quick 0 point. Perhaps we have forgotten how to run. In our next game, we shouldn’t be in the same situation if we want to win against the big boys,” Napa said. INQ

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