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    Ben Mbala bags MVP, Ricci Rivero named Most Excellent Player in Taipei tournament

    Jul 31, 2017
    Ben Mbala won MVP while Ricci Rivero was named Most Excellent Player in La Salle's championship run in the BLIA Cup. Jaime Campos, Jerome Ascano

    BEN Mbala and Ricci Rivero took home individual awards for La Salle from the Green Archers' conquest of the 2017 BLIA Cup University Basketball Tournament in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

    Mbala made his dominating presence felt as the Cameroonian standout was named MVP of the tournament that had foreign schools from United States, France, and China, among others seeing action.

    Also standing out for La Salle was Rivero, who wound up with the Most Excellent Player of the tournament.

    Rivero could be in line for a breakout performance in Season 80 as his splendid play during the preseason that also saw him selected to the Mythical Five in the Filoil Cup.

    The Green Archers went undefeated in the BLIA Cup and beat France's Universite de Lyon in the championship game.

    "Maybe because we worked hard the whole offseason and all the hardwork just paid off," said Rivero about him winning an individual award in an interview through Virtual Playground. "It's not about me making those shots but it's God who gave me the strength to do it."

    Rivero also credited his teammates for capturing the award.

    "Winning the award isn't just because of me or because I played well. It's because of my teammates who pass me the ball, my teammates who scores every time I pass them the ball. One of the biggest factor is our defense," said Rivero.

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    Ben Mbala won MVP while Ricci Rivero was named Most Excellent Player in La Salle's championship run in the BLIA Cup. Jaime Campos, Jerome Ascano
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