LA Salle secured the first twice-to-beat incentive in the Final Four as the Green Archers trounced University of Santo Tomas, 99-56, on Sunday in the UAAP Season 79 basketball tournament at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
With Ben Mbala and Jeron Teng taking the lead, the Green Archers claimed their 11th win in as many games.
La Salle can still claim an automatic berth in the finals with a sweep of its three remaining games in the elimination round.
The Growling Tigers, who lost a 38-point decision to La Salle in the first round, suffered another sound beating and dropped to 3-8.
Mbala had 21 points, 15 rebounds, and five blocks to pace the Green Archers, who led by as many as 46 points.
Teng added 16 points, while Justine Baltazar had 10 points and 12 rebounds.
Teng had 10 points in the first quarter as La Salle took control at the end of the period, 19-15, after UST at one point took a five-point lead.
The Green Archers’ outscored the Growling Tigers, 26-8, in the second quarter for a 45-23 lead at the half.
Louie Vigil had 18 points and seven rebounds for the Growling Tigers, who have lost six of their last seven matches.
La Salle 99 — Mbala 21, Teng 16, Baltazar 10, R. Rivero 9, Perkins 8, Torres 5, Montalbo 5, Tratter 4, Sargent 4, Dyke 4, Paraiso 4, P. Rivero 4, Melecio 3, Caracut 2.
UST 56 — Vigil 18, Subido 9, Sheriff 6, Huang 6, Lee 5, Arana 5, Lao 3, Faundo 2, De Guzman 2, Afoakwah 0, Macasaet 0.
Quarterscores: 19-15; 45-23; 68-37; 99-56.