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UST loses final four bid, 19-game win streak vs UP

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The University of Santo Tomas Growling Tiger loss to the hands of the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons, 69-74, in the UAAP Season 79 men’s basketball tournament, Sunday, at the FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan City.
The Diliman-based squad ended UST’s 19-game winning streak and eliminate the Espana-based cagers in the final four contention.
UST currently sits at seventh place with a 3-9 win-loss record.
Leading by one point coming into the second half, Louie Vigil tied the game 36-apiece before Paul Desiderio sparked 11-0 run, 47-36. Jamil Sheriff managed to stop the bleeding for UST but Gelo Vito pulled a three-pointer to hold a 53-47 lead over the Tigers.
UP never looked back in the final quarter, leading by as much as 15 points, 63-48. UST then staged a 18-6 run of their own to keep themselves within striking distance, 66-69. Desiderio’s charity sealed the deal for the Fighting Maroons, 73-69.
“Nakakalungkot, pero ang sa akin [lang] may matutunan yung mga players ko na at least alam nila yung nangyari,” said Tiger’s chief tactician Boy Sablan, who is still lauded the performance of the second unit despite the lost.
Skipper Vigil scored team-high 16 points and eight rebounds while Zachary Huang added 13 markers. Jeepy Faundo contributed a double-double performance with 10 points and 14 boards.
Desiderio led UP with 16 points and 12 rebounds while Noah Webb and Jett Manuel contributed for 17 points.
UST will next face the Adamson University Soaring Falcons on Wednesday, Nov. 9, at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Box Scores: UST (69) – Vigil 16, Huang 13, Faundo 10, Lee 9, Sheriff 8, Lao 5, Basibas 4, Subido 4, Afoakwah 0 Macasaet 0, Caunan 0, De Guzman 0 Quarter Scores: 12-14, 30-31, 47-53, 69-74
UP (74) – Desiderio 15, Webb 9, Manuel 8, Dario 6, Moralde 6, Gomez de Llano 6, Lao 6, Vito 5, Prado 3, Lim 3, Asilum 8, Romero 0, Espanola 0

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Table Tennis

Tiger Paddlers stun España as UST takes home double crown

The Tiger Paddlers tightened their grip to their 28th crown as they again defeated their second time contender, the National University Bulldogs, for a back-to-back championship title in this UAAP Season 82 Table Tennis Tournament.

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Photo by Troy Jacob Quinan/TomasinoWeb

The UST Tiger and Lady Paddlers’ aim for consistency in the UAAP season did not let the whole Thomasian community down as they unceasingly strived for the championship title this season.

The Tiger Paddlers tightened their grip to their 28th crown as they again defeated their second time contender, the National University Bulldogs, for a back-to-back championship title in this UAAP Season 82 Table Tennis Tournament.

With its win, the defending champs remained unbeaten as the men’s team showed dominance since the elimination round with a complete sweep.

Graduating senior Reymark Mabuang secured the win for the Tigers amidst the rival, NU Paddlers who had almost trailed behind them until the last set of the game.

Despite the fact that this is his last year in playing, as expected for Mabuang’s outstanding skills throughout his game for the season, he was claimed as this season’s Most Valuable Player.

A pair of rookies, Mcleen Dizon and Prince Garcia, also made its way for the gold as both had led the doubles division.

However, the yellow-blooded Thomasians continued its lead in the UAAP Season 82 Table Tennis Tournament as the women’s team remained persistent after upsetting the Ateneo Lady Eagles, marking their 13th championship title.

UST upset the Ateneo Lady Paddlers from almost keeping pace with the Tigresses as Lady Paddler Danica Alburo finished the fifth set with 14-12 for the singles match.

“Bilog ang bola, lahat pwedeng mangyari. Kahit ikaw ang pinakamagaling, pwede ka pa ring matalo,” Alburo shared about what inspired her throughout the season in an exclusive interview with TomasinoWeb.

Coming from a continuous heartbreak for 14 years without a title, the UST women’s team still made it to the championship platform amidst the other team’s nerve-wracking lineup for the season.

Although mournful as she ends her last staying years for the team, the graduating senior looked back to the times where she was still part of the table tennis’ Team B and now as a member of the UAAP final lineup.

“I’m very thankful na binigyan ako ni Lord ng magandang exit kasi nadefend namin yung champion. Ang bilis lang din ng 5 years. Parang natatandaan ko pa yung rookie year ko. Kung mababalik ko lang, pwede pa bang humingi ng playing years kasi ang sarap talaga maglaro for UST,” Alburo added as she expels her emotions.

Albeit the pressure in defending the 13th crown for España, the UST women’s team retrieved the finals round with an unnerving game against the Ateneo Lady Eagles.

Relieved in earning the crown, Alburo still keeps her head down and remained her feet on the ground after taking the win for her alma mater.

“It is the attitude that will maintain us there. Dapat hindi ka lagi complacent sa mga ginagawa mo. Every galaw ay dapat tactful ka, decisive. And kung magkamali ka man, dapat panindigan pa rin,” one of the eldest member of the team, Alburo, also mentioned.

Amidst knowing that there were seniors in the team, sophomore team captain Gabisay held the responsibility with the members’ cooperation and teamwork to maintain the championship title.

“Nung summer, wala pong umuwi sa’min. Hanggang sa nag-UAAP, tuloy-tuloy yung training namin. Tapos pumunta kami sa ibang bansa para maki-tune up nung sa incentive tour namin. Tapos naki-tune up nalang kami para maranasan namin yung ibang bola kung gaano pa kakulang at yung preparations na gagawin namin pagbalik dito para sa UAAP. So, malaking bagay po yun,” sophomore team captain Gabisay unfolded the story on how the whole team prepared before the start of the season.

Gabisay also took home Most Valuable Player honors in this year’s tournament.

“Pinaghirapan din po ‘yun ng buong team na mag-champion kami. At alam po namin na deserve namin ‘yun na makuha talaga. At bonus nalang po yung pagiging MVP,” the second year star player Gabisay added.

As moving to the next part of her life, Danica Alburo would like to tell every Thomasians how she balanced both academics and sports as she compared life to table tennis saying, “Parang naa-apply din siya sa table tennis, ang layo na ng score mo; 8 siya, 2 ka. Hindi pa to tapos. Kaya pa to. Hangga’t walang 11, hindi kami susuko. Hindi ako susuko.”

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Basketball

Defending champs Lady Bulldogs too much for Growling Tigresses

The UST Growling Tigresses were swept by the defending champions the NU Lady Bulldogs in Game 2 of UAAP women’s basketball tournament, 66-54, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay Saturday, Nov. 23.

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Photo by Ann Corrine Vizconde/TomasinoWeb

The UST Growling Tigresses were swept by the defending champions the NU Lady Bulldogs in Game 2 of UAAP women’s basketball tournament, 66-54, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay Saturday, Nov. 23.

The Tigresses hoped to live another day as they battled against the defending champions but failed as the Lady Bulldogs started the game strong and never looked back. 

UST was able to inch as close as 10 points in the payoff period before the Lady Bulldogs replied with an 18-4 run that immediately brought the lead out of reach in the final minutes.

Reynalyn Ferrer and MVP Grace Irebu were the key players for UST during the game as they had 16 and 11 points respectively.

On the other hand, NU continued its six-peat with three of their players scoring double digits in Monique del Carmen and Kaye Pingol who had 15 points apiece and Rhema Itesi with 12.

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Sports

UST’s finals run is a testament to Aldin Ayo’s greatness

For UST Growling Tigers Head Coach Aldin Ayo, their finals trip is a reminder of how UST’s program has grown in the two years under his care.

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Photo by Christine Annmarie Tapawan/TomasinoWeb

The UST Growling Tigers may have been victims of Ateneo’s run to perfection after being swept in the UAAP season 82 men’s basketball finals on Wednesday, but it is hard to deny how far the program has gone within the first two years under current head coach Aldin Ayo. 

From a respectable 5-9 record in season 81, the dark horse Tigers made an unexpected leap this season which saw them go 8-6 in eliminations which was good enough for fourth seed. 

In the stepladder semis, they survived an FEU program that had one of the best defenses in the league, then proceeded to weather a twice to beat advantage from the UP Fighting Maroons that ultimately resulted in Renzo Subido immortalizing himself with a triple that sent the Tigers back to the Finals. 

Come the Finals, UST was ultimately swept by the near impenetrable Ateneo Blue Eagles, but not before they posted a scare to deny the defending champs’ attempt at perfection in Game 2. 

For Aldin Ayo however, a loss will be a loss, but this finals trip is a reminder of how UST’s program has grown under his care.

“I could say yes. Kasi syempre you always want to improve eh.” Ayo answered when asked if the program has indeed grown within his first two years in España,” during his press interview after the UST-Ateneo finals Game 2 Wednesday, Nov. 20.

“Last year we ended up sixth, this year, we made it to the Finals. Our mindset is even if we made it to the finals this season, ang dami pa namin kulang, ang dami pa namin dapat trabahuhin, and I will make sure na kung ano yung mga experiences namin sa finals, matuto kami and trabahuhin namin kung anong kulang sa amin.” he added. 

Prior to his current stint in UST, Ayo steered the Letran Knights to their first title in a decade back in 2015, and eventually snapped a two-year title drought for the De LaSalle Green Archers just a year later. 

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