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    La Salle survives scare from UP for first round sweep of UAAP baseball tournament

    Jan 19, 2014

    DE La Salle completed a first-round sweep of the UAAP Season 76 baseball tournament with a nail-biting 8-7 win over University of the Philippines on Sunday at the Rizal Memorial ballpark.

    Basti Uichico crushed a three-run triple in the second inning but the Archers still needed to survive a furious charge by the Maroons in the ninth inning to complete the sweep.

    The Taft-based batters ended their first-round campaign with a perfect 5-0 win-loss slate.

    Felix Imperial singled, Christopher Perlas was hit by a pitch, and Francisco Hashimoto reached safely on a catching error to load the bases and set up Uichico’s bases-clearing hit at the top of the second inning.

    Carlos Munoz also reached first base on another error to advance Uichico home for a 5-1 lead midway through the second.

    But after holding a comfortable 8-3 lead, La Salle found itself leadng by only one run when UP’s Mikmik Herrera slammed a two-out two-run single to center field, 7-8.

    However, the Green Archers caught Herrera stealing second base to end the game.

    Defending champion Ateneo, meanwhile, defeated National University, 3-2, in a rematch of last year’s finals to solidify its hold of second place with a 4-1 card.

    Dio Remollo and Raphael Antonio Balagtas had run-scoring at-bats in the first inning with the Blue Eagles pitching duo of Andrew Tan and Adrian Bernardo also coming through on defense to protect their lead.

    Adrian Bernardo blasted a triple to left field to lead off the bottom of the first inning before easily trotting home on a single by Remollo, who was later thrown out at the plate on a bases loaded situation. But Balagtas pushed Matt Laurel home on a sacrifice fly and the bases full to peg Ateneo’s lead to 2-0.

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    Tan and Bernardo staved off NU’s batters allowing only seven hits. Bernardo also issued a two-out strikeout to Herxel Fortunato with the bases loaded to end the top of the fifth inning which turned out to be a game-saving out.

    Not even the presence of NU owner Hans Sy could spark a resurgence for the Bulldogs who absorbed their third loss in four outings.

    Meanwhile, Andrew Mercado pitched a complete game while yielding just five hits as University of Santo Tomas beat Adamson, 12-5, for its first win.

    NU, UST, UP, and Adamson are now tied with similar 1-3 win-loss records.

    The first round formally ends on Thursday at the Rizal ballpark with the resumption of the UP-UST and Adamson-NU matches that were called off due to darkness.

    Team standings: DLSU 5-0, Ateneo 4-1, NU 1-3, UST 1-3, UP 1-3, Ateneo 1-3.

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