SJ Belangel stars, Kai Sotto makes quiet UAAP juniors debut as Ateneo downs UST
Sanjosef Belangel powers the Blue Eaglets to a strong start. Jerome Ascano

SJ BELANGEL had 20 points and 15 rebounds, while Kai Sotto played limited minutes in his UAAP debut as Ateneo beat University of Santo Tomas, 79-73, on Saturday in the opening day of Season 79 juniors basketball at the Filoil Flying V Centre.

Jason Credo added 15 points to help the Blue Eaglets pick up a win in their season debut.

The 6-foot-9 Sotto had a rebound and a block in two minutes in his much-awaited debut for the Blue Eaglets.

In other results, National University began its title defense with a 104-54 win over University of the East.

John Lloyd Clemente had 21 points, while Rhayyan Amsali had 18 points to lift the Bullpups, who will play this season without now-La Salle seniors center Justin Baltazar.

Carl Tamayo had 14 points and 11 rebounds as Adamson beat University of the Philippines, 82-59. Juan Gomez De Liano had 18 points and 12 rebounds for the Junior Maroons.

Jack Gloria finished with 15 points and 11 rebounds as Far Eastern University-Diliman downed last year’s runner-up La Salle-Zobel, 66-56.

The Junior Archers sorely missed last year’s Most Valuable Player and now Green Archer Aljun Melecio as no player scored in double figures for the Ayala Alabang-based dribblers.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @reubensports