Dave Yu starting to regain footing after injury-riddled UAAP seasons with strong Season 80 debut
Dave Yu had 14 points and eight rebounds in his Season 80 debut for NU. Jerome Ascano

DAVE Yu couldn't be happier for his first game of UAAP Season 80.

The 21-year-old Yu had an impressive debut for National University with 14 points, eight rebounds, two assists, and two steals in a win over University of the East, 86-69, on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.

No one is happier than Yu, who played limited minutes last season due to a sprain and bone spurs in his ankle. Following the title run of the Bulldogs in 2014, the 6-foot-2 Yu also suffered an ACL tear that sidelined him in Season 78.

"Siyempre, okay. Matagal ko na ito pinaghirapan. Almost three years na. The hardwork paid off. Pero kulang pa," said Yu.

[See NU Bulldogs catch fire in third to overcome UE Warriors in UAAP Season 80 opener]

Yu sparked a big run by the Bulldogs in the third quarter after the Red Warriors came up with a rally of its own to cut NU's lead. Yu clustered five straight points at the end of an 11-0 blitz that put the Bulldogs ahead, 59-45.

Yu also drilled a corner triple, increasing NU's lead to 16, 62-48, in the same canto.

But Yu was quick to play down his contributions as it was a team effort that propelled the Bulldogs to the victory.

"We just played good defense. 'Yun ang sinasabi ni coach Jamike [Jarin]. Nung first half, sloppy kami kaya nung third quarter, kailangan namin mag-bounce back sa defense," said Yu. 

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