UNIVERSITY of Santo Tomas (UST) turned back also-ran University of the East (UE), 94-81, to clinch a playoff for the remaining Final Four berth on Saturday in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 79 juniors basketball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
Miguel Ratuiste had 25 points and 15 rebounds while Inand Fornilla also had a double-double with 18 points and 15 boards as the Tiger Cubs nailed their sixth win in 14 matches.
De La Salle-Zobel, meanwhile, eliminated University of the Philippines Integrated School, 82-69, to tie UST at 6-8 and forge a playoff for fourth-seed on Thursday.
Ateneo beat Far Eastern University-Diliman, 75-70, to join its victims in second spot with 11 wins against three losses while keeping its twice-to-beat semifinals bonus alive.
The Blue Eaglets and the Baby Tamaraws meet again on Thursday to determine second seed in the playoffs.
Ateneo’s victory paved the way for defending champion National University to secure the No. 1 ranking in the Final Four.
Joaqui Mariano led the Junior Archers with 23 points and nine rebounds, Jan Sobrevega had 17 points while MR Romero added 16 points and 18 boards.
Joaquin Manuel paced the Eaglets with 18 points while Jason Credo and SJ Belangel each tossed in 13 markers.
The Junior Maroons bowed out of contention with their ninth loss in 14 contests.