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Why Ayo chose the Tigers

Get to know more about the Growling Tigers’ new coach.

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Photo by Darryl Lance Limpin/TomasinoWeb

After leading the De La Salle University Green Archers to two consecutive UAAP Finals appearances and a championship last season, Coach Aldin Ayo is now set to replace Boy Sablan as the new head coach of the Growling Tigers.

In an exclusive interview with TomasinoWeb, Ayo said that choosing to coach the España-based squad is one of his personal milestones.

“For me, [I chose to coach UST] for personal growth. Gusto kong mag-grow pa as a coach, as a person, [and yung] overall na pagkatao [ko]. I believe na makukuha ko ‘yun dito sa UST,” Ayo said.

Hailing from Sorsogon City, Ayo studied at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran, UST’s sister school, where he played for the Letran Knights as point guard, winning back-to-back championships in the NCAA in 1998 and 1999.

Ayo was instrumental in securing Letran’s championship title in 1999 when he scored the go-ahead layup in Letran’s first game against the Jose Rizal College Heavy Bombers during the finals round.

He continued to play for the Knights until his graduation in 2001, earning a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy.

Ayo would first venture into coaching in 2008, mentoring the basketball team of Aemilianum College from his hometown—leading the once-underdog team to a championship title in Sorsogon—and the varsity team of his high school alma mater, the Our Lady of Peñafrancia Seminary.

After his coaching stint with Aemilianum, he established the Ayo Basketball Clinic – Information, Demonstration, Explanation, and Application of Skills—or ABC IDEAS—where he taught basketball to children for free. Ayo continued to run the clinic even while serving as the city councilor of Sorsogon City in 2010.

Ayo would work again with the Knights in 2014. He would lead the team to a championship title against the San Beda College Red Lions and win the NCAA’s Coach of the Year Award the following year.

During his coaching stint with Letran, Ayo said he formed personal bonds with Thomasian managers and Dominican priests, which led him to eventually choose to move to UST and lead the Tigers as head coach after his contract with the Green Archers ended last year.

“I’m close with the people who were involved in running the team. They’re my personal friends,” he said, specifically mentioning the University’s current Athletics Director Jannel Abogado, O.P.

“Father Jannel is from Sorsogon, and lots of priests are Bicolanos. Almost the same naman, Letran tapos UST. Actually, ‘yung mga pari na nandun sa Letran before, noong nandoon ako, nandito [na din] sila ngayon,” Ayo added.

by Lanz Nathan Hernandez

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NU halts Tigers’ winning streak

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Photo by Christine Tapawan

The UST Growling Tigers fell short against the National University Bulldogs, 61-69, in the UAAP Season 81 men’s basketball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan Sunday.

“As I’ve told you before, di naman kami concerned sa spot eh. We just want to compete. We take it one game at a time,” UST head coach Aldin Ayo said.

Renzo Subido had 18 points for UST, and Marvin Lee had 12 in the losing cause.

The Tigers had an early advantage over the Bulldogs, but lost it by the crucial final period.

“Defense. Pinaghandaan naman namin yan during the pre-season. Pinaghandaan naman namin yan the whole week. If you can’t play good defense down the stretch, you can’t have a good impression,” Ayo explained.

Rookie Cj Cansino did not have a good scoring game but contributed well in terms of rebound, garnering 18 boards, in the absence of UST’s big man Steve Akomo.

Bulldogs’ Dave Ildefonso made an impact scoring 16 points, while Troy Rike and John Clemente chipped in 13 and 12 markers, respectively.

UST’s next game will be on Sunday afternoon, Oct. 28, against the University of the East Red Warriors, at the same venue.

“Humihingi ako ng suporta sa buong community, especially against UE. So we’re inviting all Thomasians, students, alumni,” Ayo quipped. “Rest assured, we’re going to do our best. Ibibigay namin lahat, para ma-deserve lang namin yung panalo.”

Quarter Scores:

11-15, 32-33, 42-53, 61-69

Box Scores:

UST 61- Subido 18, Lee 12, Huang 11, Cansino 8, Mahinay 8, Caunan 4, Zamora 0, Batalier 0, Marcos 0, Agustin 0, Consejo 0.

NU 68- D. Ildefonso 16, Rike 13, Clemente 12, Gaye 10, Diputado 7, S. Ildefonso 4, Yu 3, Sinclair 2, Joson 2, Aquino 0, Galinato 0, Gallego 0, Tibayan 0.

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Tigers extend win streak to three

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Photo by Christine Tapawan

The UST Growling Tigers escaped the Far Eastern University Tamaraws, 78-70, to stretch their win streak to three in the UAAP Season 81 Men’s Basketball Tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena Sunday.

Zachary Huang led UST with 20 points and six rebounds, while Marvin Lee and Renzo Subido contributed 17 and 14 markers, respectively.

Lee sank back-to-back treys following an LJ Gonzales layup to take the lead in the final quarter, 55-51, after ending the prior frame tied with FEU at 49.

“We executed our game plan. Lumabas yung laro ng mga bata. Pinaghandaan naman namin ‘to… pero long way to go. We are not going to be contented by these wins,” said UST head coach Aldin Ayo.

Huang’s jump shot sparked a 12-2 run to stretch their lead to ten, 67-57, before Arvin Tolentino drained a three to cut UST’s rally.

“We are going to continue working hard, and we are going to compete,” Ayo continued.

Richard Escoto and Arvin Tolentino were the only players who scored in double digits for FEU with 12 and 11 points, respectively.

Quarter Scores:
23-19, 37-33, 49-49, 78-70

Box Scores:
UST 78 — Huang 20, Lee 17, Subido 14, Mahinay 10, Cansino 5, Bataller 4, Caunan 2, Marcos 2, Bonleon 2, Consejo 2, Zamora 0, Agustin 0.

FEU 70 — Escoto 12, Tolentino 11, Orizu 8, Stockton 8, Gonzales 7, Cani 6, Ebona 6, Comboy 5, Parker 3, Iñigo 2, Bayquin 2, Tuffin 0.

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UST notches back-to-back win after defeating UP

After overpowering the UE Red Warriors in their last game, the UST Growling Tigers upset the UP Fighting Maroons, 86-72, in the UAAP Season 81 Men’s Basketball Tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena Wednesday.

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After overpowering the University of the East Red Warriors in their last game, the UST Growling Tigers upset the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons, 86-72, in the UAAP Season 81 Men’s Basketball Tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena Wednesday.

This is their third win that ties them with UP at fifth place with a 3-4 card to end the first round match-up.

Cj Cansino led UST with 16 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists, while Renzo Subido and John Kenneth Zamora added 13 and 12 markers apiece.

Bright Akhueti had 18 points and 11 rebounds, a double-double performance that fell short from sealing the victory for UP.

UST will try to keep their winning momentum as they face the Far Eastern University for the second round of eliminations on Sunday, Oct. 14, at the same venue.

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