DEFENDING champion La Salle has a tough first assignment against Final Four rival Far Eastern University, gets an early meeting with archrival Ateneo and battle other teams before facing runner-up UST in the final match of the first round of the UAAP Season 77 men’s basketball tournament.
The Green Archers open their new campaign against the Tamaraws at the start of the tournament on July 12 at the Araneta Coliseum, then face the Blue Eagles a week later based on the schedule furnished by UAAP secretary treasurer Rod Roque to the media in Tuesday’s PSA Forum.
Season host University of the East plays in the first match against University of the Philippines.
Jeron Teng and the Green Archers won both elimination-round games against Ateneo, including a 66-64 second-round win where he hit the game-winning shot to beat the Blue Eagles.
The match also became controversial as Ateneo coach Bo Perasol was heckled by La Salle fan JJ Atayde on his way out of the dugout. Perasol nearly confronted Atayde at the stands but was held back by Ateneo staff. Perasol was suspended for one game while the Atayde was banned from the venue for the remainder of the season.
Meanwhile, the new-look Blue Eagles led by last season’s juniors MVP Thirdy Ravena and Arvin Tolentino get their first test against Adamson on the second playdate of the season on July 13 also at The Big Dome.
The Tigers face National University at 4 p.m.
La Salle and UST face each other in the final game of the first round on August 10 at the Mall of Asia Arena, the site where the Green Archers defeated the Tigers in Game Three of the Season 76 championship.
Sauler and the Archers this time face a Tigers squad without coach Pido Jarencio and main man Jeric Teng and now led by coach Bong de la Cruz.
The first round schedule, subject to change, is as follows:
July 12 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. UE vs UP, 4 p.m. DLSU vs. FEU
July 13 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. Ateneo vs. Adamson, 4 p.m. NU vs. UST
July 16 (MOA) – 2 p.m. UST vs UE, 4 p.m. Adamson vs. FEU
July 19 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. NU vs. UP, 4 p.m. DLSU vs. Ateneo
July 20 (MOA) – 2 p.m. Adamson vs. UE, 4 p.m. FEU vs. UST
July 23 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. Ateneo vs. UP, 4 p.m. NU vs. DLSU
July 26 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. UST vs. Adamson, 4 p.m. UE vs. DLSU
July 27 (MOA) – 2 p.m. UP vs. FEU, 4 p.m. Ateneo vs. NU
July 30 (MOA) – 2 p.m. FEU vs. UE, 4 p.m. Adamson vs. NU
August 2 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. UP vs. UST, 4 p.m. DLSU vs. Adamson
August 3 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. NU vs. UE, 4 p.m. FEU vs. Ateneo
August 6 (Araneta) – 2 p.m. UP vs. DLSU, 4 p.m. Ateneo vs. UST
August 9 (MOA) – 2 p.m. Adamson vs. UP, 4 p.m. NU vs. FEU
August 10 (MOA) – 2 p.m. UE vs. Ateneo, 4 p.m. DLSU vs. UST