Photo from Miggy Solitaria
The Archers controlled the game from start to finish as the De La Salle University Green Archers defeated French squad Universite De Lyon, 93-74, to sweep the 2017 BLIA cup.
The first quarter was close, as the Archers held on to a 25-21 lead to end the first quarter.
The Green and White started to take control of the game during the second quarter, as the first half ended with the Philippines representative with the lead, 44-31.
For most of the second half, the French squad would try to rally, cutting the lead to single-digits several times during the half, but La Salle always had an answer for every French rally.
DLSU blew the game wide-open during the last few minutes of the game, highlighted by an Aljun Melecio Hail Mary shot during the dying minutes of the game to seal the championship for the Archers.
Ben Mbala once again starred for the Archers with 26 big points, 13 rebounds and 4 blocks. Melecio dropped 19 points while Capacio and Ricci Rivero chipped in 12 and 10 points a piece.
As expected, Mbala dominated during the tournament, as he showed that a back-to-back UAAP MVP award is a huge possibility.
Ricci Rivero was consistent during the tournament, showing everyone that he is a contender for a UAAP Mythical 5 spot and Kib Montalbo is still the initiator of the mayhem defense, thanks to his relentless defense that led to several steals.
After failing to defend the FilOil championship last summer, this was good tournament to win for La Salle.
The UAAP title defense of the Archers will begin soon this September. The Archers are still the favorites to win it all, but the others schools has improved as well. Regardless, we are in for a treat as the UAAP Season is once again upon us!
DLSU – Mbala 28, R.Rivero 25, Montalbo 13, Santillan 8, Melecio 4, Tratter 4, Caracut 2, Go 0, Baltazar 0,