National University Lady Bulldogs maintained it’s immaculate record as it clobbered the Ateneo Lady Eagles, 75-55, to earn their second straight title of the UAAP women’s basketball tournament at the Blue Eagle Gym in Quezon City.
It was NU’s 32nd straight win and second straight sweep of the UAAP women’s basketball tournament.
Ateneo put up a fight in the early goings with Jolina Go’s two triples to take a 6-2 lead. But NU tightened up their defense and pounded Ateneo in the paint as they scored 8 straight points to take a 10-6 lead in the first quarter.
Andrea Tongco and Shelley Gupilan then shot the lights out in the second quarter as they scored 19 of NU’s 30 points in the second quarter as they pulled away from Ateneo for good.
NU continued to overpower Ateneo in the third as they took a commanding 60-34 lead coming into the final quarter. From then on, it was a smooth sailing for NU as they kept the Lady Eagles at bay and looked forward to celebrate their second straight title.
Coach Pat Aquino lauded her girls especially the veterans after the game. “I’m so happy especially sa mga seniors ko. They really stepped up.” said Aquino. In this particular game, it was Andrea Tongco that earned coach Pat’s admiration as she scored 11 points in that furious 2nd quarter run.
With some of his key players graduating, he has set his sights on the future for the Lady Bulldogs. “We’ve been ready for that for the past years since we’ve been building this team. Those rookies are gonna be awesome next year and after that season there will be new ones coming in.” says a beaming Aquino. “The program still continues and I’m happy with the help of management and the school.” added Aquino.
The NU Lady Bulldogs currently is the third team in the UAAP with the longest win streak. The Adamson softball team is 62-0 spanning 5 seasons, while NU men’s lawn tennis team is 33-0.
Reigning back-to-back season MVP Afril Bernardino led the Lady Bulldogs with 18 points, 17 rebounds 3 steals and 3 blocks and got the nod to become the finals MVP. Andrea Tongco finished the game with 17 points while Rheana Itesi registered 13 points and 9 rebounds.
For Ateneo, battling NU in the finals is already an achievement of sorts as they endured five straight do-or-die games, including 2 against La Salle, to get into the finals.
Jolina Go paced the Lady Eagles with 19 points and 5 rebounds while graduating player Danica Jose chipped in 12 points, 10 boards and 3 assists.
NU (75) – Bernardino 18, Tongco 17, Itesi 13, Gupilan 11, Abriam 6, Paig 3, Animam 2, Miranda 2, Del Carmen 2, Reyes 1, Antiquerra 0, Sison 0 Nabalan 0, Harada 0, Layug 0, Riel 0