UNIVERSITY of Santo Tomas held on to a 68-66 win over Ateneo for its fourth straight victory in the UAAP Season 82 women's basketball tournament on Saturday at Mall of Asia Arena.
MVP frontrunner Grace Irebu of Congo had 24 points, 25 rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block as UST improved to 6-2, saving the win after Ateneo rallied from 68-60 down.
Kat Guytingco and Jhaz Joson brought the Lady Eagles back within two with 23.1 seconds remaining and even forced a stop when Shen Callangan stepped out of bounds with 10.4 ticks left.
But Joson was unable to get a shot up, with Irebu securing the ball as time expired.
Lon Rivera added 10 points and four boards, while Jeorge Panti had nine points, six rebounds and three assists for the Golden Tigresses, who overcame 26 turnovers.
"Obviously, it didn't turn out the way we wanted it to be. We were too cautious to try and break their press," said assistant coach Arsenio Dysangco. "We just didn't follow the plan coach Haydee (Ong) set for us. That's where the frustration comes from."
Alyssa Villamor paced Ateneo with 17 points and four rebounds, while Guytingco had 12 of her 14 points in the second half.
The loss sent the Lady Eagles down to a 3-5 card.
In the first game, Adamson shook off a poor start to beat University of the East, 66-56.
Rose Ann Dampios led the Lady Falcons with 24 points built on four triples, to go with five rebounds and three steals.
"Malaking bagay si Rose Ann kasi isa siya sa ine-aim ko na tutulong sa team," said coach Ewon Arayi. "Ang ayaw ko lang is how she played defense. Para sa akin, depensa muna bago opensa."
UE side took a 13-10 lead after the first period, but Dampios and Mar Prado conspired in the Lady Falcons' 24-point second quarter to seize control of the game, 34-27, and eventually pick up the pace in the second half, where they held 26-point leads.
Prado finished with 15 points, 11 rebounds, four steals and two assists, while Lhyn Bilbao got 10 points, three boards, and two assists.
Yet Arayi remained far from content from this victory, harping consistency, especially on defense for her side.
"Nandito kami to compete. Hindi kami nandito para magpaganda. Sabi ko sana kung gaano kaganda ang sapatos ninyo, ganoon din kaganda ang laro niyo. Dapat walang minuto tayo na sasayangin," she lamented.
"Sa UAAP, walang dapat iniismol. Itong panalo na ito, sana it will serve as a lesson sa bawat isa, na pag marunong ka at di ka naka-score, di pwede na di ka dumepensa."
Adamson improved to a 5-3 record, while dealing UE its third straight loss to send it to a 1-7 slate.
Jearzy Ganade led the Lady Warriors with 15 points, seven assists, six rebounds and two steals, while Princess Pedregosa had 14 points, 11 rebounds and four dimes.
The two, however, accounted for 14 of UE's 32 turnovers.
Adamson 66 - Dampios 24, Prado 15, Bilbao 10, Flor 7, Araja 4, Balane 3, Ei. Alaba 3, Ea. Alaba 0, Anticamara 0, Catulong 0, Dela Cruz 0, Dionela 0, Dumelod 0, Mendoza 0, Ornopia 0, Tandaan 0.
UE 56 - Ganade 15, Pedregosa 14, Cortizano 12, Ordas 6, Nama 4, Cuadero 3, Terrinal 2, Brencis 0, Caraig 0, Fernandez 0, Gaa 0, Gervacio 0, Noquil 0, Paule 0, Raymundo 0, Tinio 0.
Quarterscores: 10-13; 34-27; 49-38; 66-56.
UST 68 - Irebu 24, Rivera 10, Panti 9, Ferrer 6, Tacatac 6, Gandalla 5, Callangan 3, Soriano 3, Portillo 2, Javier 0, Sangalang 0.
Ateneo 66 - Villamor 17, Guytingco 14, Yam 14, Joson 8, Nimes 7, Chu 3, Payac 3, Cancio 0, Moslares 0, Newsome 0.
Quarterscores: 17-12; 28-29; 49-51; 68-66.