UNIVERSITY of Santo Tomas exacted revenge on UAAP conqueror Ateneo, winning Game Three of the title series 81-76 to rule the Philippine Collegiate Champions League ON Friday night at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
After a tight contest in the first three quarters, the Growling Tigers poured in seven consecutive points capped by a Jeric Teng triple for a 67-60 lead early in the final canto.
UST continued to dictate the tempo as it hammered the Blue Eagles with a 12-3 run and the lead ballooned to 79-65 with 2:53 on the clock.
Ryan Buenafe answered back with his own seven-point spurt to slice down Ateneo's deficit to five, 74-79.
Kiefer Ravena made his two charities to further inch closer, 76-79, with 30.5 ticks left to play.
But the Pido Jarencio-led squad widened the gap, 81-76, with a Kevin Ferrer putback off a miss by Karim Abdul.
"Actually from the start, before ng game, sinabi ko sa mga players it's about time na ma-prove natin kung ano tayo, kung ano ang worth ng team natin," said UST coach Jarencio. "Hindi pwedeng everytime natatalo tayo na we're a bunch of losers. Ayoko ng ganyang attitude."
"Tinanghal tayo na No. 1 team sa more than 200 teams," Jarencio added. "Sobra pa 'to sa UAAP na achievement."
Teng, who was named Most Valuable Player, came up with 22 points, including five triples. Ferrer and Jeric Fortuna chipped in 21 and 11 markers respectively for UST.
"Hindi importante 'yung MVP," said Teng. "Ang gusto ko lang mag-champion, mabigyan ko ng championship sina (Melo) Afuang at (Jeric) Fortuna (who are graduating)."
The Growling Tigers, who bowed to Ateneo in the UAAP championship in October, savored their revenge.
"Revenge na namin 'to," said Teng. "Noong yung UAAP andoon na kami eh but we fell short kaya ngayon sineryoso na talaga namin na dito sa PCCL magchampion na kami."
Ravena and Buenafe had 20 points apiece for Ateneo.
UST 81 - Teng 22, Ferrer 21, Fortuna 11, Abdul 8, Bautista 7, Daquioag 6, Afuang 4, Mariano 2, Hainga 0, Pe 0, Lo 0.
Ateneo 76 - Ravena 20, Buenafe 20, Slaughter 11, Salva 9, Elorde 7, Tiongson 3, Chua 1, Golla 0, Gonzaga 0.
Quarterscores: 19-19; 45-39; 60-57; 81-76.