TYLER Tio buried a go-ahead triple with 17.3 seconds to play in the fourth to lift Ateneo to a 78-76 victory over Letran on Sunday in the Filoil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup.
Tio’s heroics carried the Blue Eagles to their second straight victory to improve their win-loss record to 2-2.
The former Xavier cager made the triple that put the Blue Eagles ahead, 77-76. After Anton Asistio made only one free throw with 12.7 seconds, Bong Quinto missed a lay-up in Letran’s final possession.
Tio, an incoming sophomore, finished with 17 points, while Thirdy Ravena added 15 points and six rebounds for the Blue Eagles, who won despite shooting just 14-of-29 from the field.
Rey Nambatac had 25 points, nine in the fourth period as he put Letran in the game during the fourth quarter to no avail as Ateneo hit clutch shots in the end game.
Ateneo pulled away to start off the fourth quarter with Mike Nieto scoring five straight points for a 66-58 lead. Letran, however, kept the game close with a 9-2 run, setting up a thrilling finish.
Ateneo (78)—Tio 17, Ravena 15, Asistio 9, Ikeh 7, Go 7, Mi. Nieto 7, White 6, Verano 5, Ma. Nieto 3, Porter 2, Tolentino 0, Wong 0, Mamuyac 0.
Letran (76)—Nambatac 25, Quinto 9, Balanza 9, Caralipio 7, Calvo 6, Pamulaklakin 5, Ambohot 3, Gedaria 3, Taladua 3, Balagasay 2, Vacaro 2, Bernabe 2, I. Villanueva 0, Pascual 0, De Villa 0.
Quarters: 20-21, 31-33, 61-58, 78-76.