Former collegiate superstar Boyet Bautista and Roger Araneta led reigning champion Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to an opening day victory over Senate, 85-71, in the fifth season of UNTV Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Bautista, the former Letran Knights and National Collegiate Athletic Association Most Valuable Player winner, notched 16 points including three triples along with five assists and five steals while Araneta scored 13 points to hand the Cavaliers a 1-0 win-loss record.
The Cavaliers, a two-time champion, were never threatened the rest of the way taking a 24-17 first quarter and 48-30 lead at halftime before sustaining the advantage in the second half. AFP kept its advantage at the end of third period, 64-51, and until the last seconds of fourth period.
AFP also drew 12 points and six rebounds from big man Jeffrey Quiambao.
Former Philippine Basketball League superstar Marlon Legaspi finished with 13 points and eight rebounds to lead the Senate, while Senator Joel Villanueva and Senator Sonny Angara added 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Next game is set on September 11 at the Pasig City Sports Complex at 5:00 p.m. between House of Representatives Solons and the Department of Justice (DOJ) Boosters.
Big names in the government agencies like Malacañang, AFP, Senate, DOJ and House of Representatives, meanwhile, have joined the tournament not only to create awareness about wellness but also to help improve the plight of the downtrodden in the society.
The other participating teams are the Philippine National Police Responders, Metro Manila Development Authority Blackwolves, National Housing Authority Builders, Bureau of Fire Protection Firefighters, Judiciary Magis, Government Service Insurance System Furies, Ombudsman Graftbusters and the Bureau of Customs Transformers.