De La Salle University eyes a third straight win when it collides against host University of Santo Tomas (UST) in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Season 79 men’s basketball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City today.
The Green Archers will face the Growling Tigers in the 4 p.m. second game after the 2 p.m. opening match between the Ateneo De Manila University Blue Eagles and the Far Eastern University (FEU) Tamaraws.
La Salle beat FEU (83-78) and University of the Philippines (89-71) previously.
“I already watched all the teams here in the UAAP and UST could upset [us]if we relax,” Green Archers coach Aldin Ayo told The Manila Times on Tuesday.
Ayo said he is not satisfied yet with the way his wards perform offensive and defensive strategies.
“We still need to refine our defense and at the same time our offense. We committed 20 turnovers the last time and we cannot afford to let that happen again,” Ayo added. “(Jason) Perkins is now okay but we are waiting for the go signal from our therapist if he’ll be allowed to play.”
La Salle will be relying on rookie Ben Mbala, Jeron Teng, Julian Sargent, Andrei Caracut, Kim Montalbo, Prince Rivero and Thomas Torres in their bout against the Growling Tigers.
UST, with a 1-1 win-loss record, will face La Salle fresh from an 88-87 win over University of the East.
Henri Subido, who posted 26 points including four triples in their last game, will lead the Growling Tigers with the help of Jon Sheriff, Dean Lee and Louie Vigil.
Meanwhile, the Tams are aiming for a second consecutive victory when they battle Ateneo De Manila University. FEU under coach Nash Racela successfully stopped the Adamson Falcons last Sunday.
Prince Orizu, Alejandrino Iñigo, Richard Escoto and Reymar Jose will lead the Tamaraws’ charge against the Blue Eagles.
Ateneo, who lost 70-60 to the National University Bulldogs last Sunday will be relying on Aaron Black, Thirdy Ravena and Mike Nieto in its bout against FEU.