Joaqui Mariano powers De La Salle-Zobel past UST and into Final Four of UAAP Jrs basketball
Joaqui Mariano matches the game high 17 points to lead the Junior Archers. Dante Peralta

JOAQUI Mariano had 17 points and six rebounds to anchor De La Salle-Zobel to a 72-65 victory over University of Sto. Tomas on Thursday to gain the last spot in the UAAP Season 79 juniors basketball Final Four at The Arena in San Juan.

Jan Sobrevega had 14 points for the Junior Archers, who will face reigning champion National University in a rematch of last year’s finals protagonists.

Franz Diaz had an all-around effort of nine points, seven rebounds and six assists for the Junior Archers, who will play NU on Tuesday, 3 p.m.

It was a gallant effort by the Tiger Cubs, who were left in tears after falling short of the semifinals.

Following the graduation of last year’s Most Valuable Player Aljun Melecio, the Junior Archers languished at the bottom half of the team standings but their semifinal chances were boosted following the forfeiture of wins by Adamson for fielding an ineligible player.

Crispin Cansino had 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Tiger Cubs.

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