THE hype surrounding the championship series between Ateneo and University of the Philippines lived up to the billing with an exciting Game One going to the blue side.
Crowds from both sides packed the Mall of Asia Arena, with a season-high 21,608 fans in attendance to witness the duel between the Blue Eagles and the Fighting Maroons on Saturday.
So intent were these fans to the game that a few of our readers couldn't help but wonder why Ateneo was gifted with a technical free throw at the start of the second half, one which Matt Nieto canned to open the third frame.
Intrigued, Spin.ph asked UAAP commissioner Junel Baculi on the infraction and the ever-approachable executive shed light on the matter.
It turns out, someone from the UP camp violated a league rule during the game.
"During halftime and at the end of the game, you are not allowed to approach any of the officials," he explained.
Baculi refused to mention who from the Fighting Maroons committed the violation, but sources privy to the incident bared that it was UP team patron and former Cavite governor Jonvic Remulla who approached the officials to air his displeasure.
The UAAP commissioner added that there is a "cooling off period" before anyone from both teams can air their arguments to the officials.
"For halftime, it is during the halftime break. After the game, on the other hand, it is for the next 24 hours," said Baculi.
The penalty, however, meant little as Ateneo took the 88-79 victory over UP to grab a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three championship series.