LA Salle secured at least a playoff for a twice-to-beat advantage in the Final Four with a 94-59 win over University of Sto. Tomas on Sunday in the UAAP Season 80 basketball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Green Archers won for the fifth straight time after putting UST away right in the second period, outscoring the Growling Tigers, 25-8, on the way to the most lopsided win by a team this season.
With the 35-point victory, La Salle tallied its 10th win in 12 outings to stay in second place behind Ateneo, which claimed the first twice-to-beat advantage after its 11th win in as many outings on Saturday.
Ricci Rivero scored nine points in the second quarter run including back-to-back three-point plays as the Green Archers took a 45-24 lead at halftime.
The Growling Tigers are 0-12, two losses away from a winless season.
UST had an early 4-0 start, and was ahead, 10-7, in the first quarter, but had no answer to the might of La Salle, which built a 20-16 lead at the end of the period.
La Salle won by 29 points in their first-round game,
The Growling Tigers have lost to the Green Archers by an average margin of 36.25 points in the last two seasons.
Ben Mbala had 17 points, nine rebounds and three blocks, while Rivero contributed 16 points, seven rebounds, three assists and two steals for the Green Archers, who led by as many as 42 points.
Marvin Lee had a game-high 24 points for the Growling Tigers.
La Salle 94 – Mbala 17, Ri. Rivero 16, Go 12, P. Rivero 10, Tratter 8, Caracut 7, Melecio 6, Santillan 6, Capacio 5, Baltazar 4, Montalbo 2, Paraiso 1, Tero 0, Gonzales 0.
UST 59 – Lee 25, Akomo 14, Sta. Ana 4, De Guzman 4, Basibas 4, Escalambre 4, Macasaet 2, Soriano 2, Faundo 0, Caunan 0, Romero 0, Kwawukumey 0.
Quarterscores: 20-16; 45-24; 77-41; 94-59.