Friday, July 29, 2011

Olympians open 11th NAASCU with a win

The STI College Olympians

There is a latin phrase that comes to mind after today’s NAASCU opener "Amat victoria curam - Victory favors those who take pains!" The University of Manila Hawks won the 10th NAASCU basketball title at the expense of the STI College which the Olympians took painfully and is now paying the dividends of their hard work the past year. After that loss, the Olympians have now resurrected and its the turn of the Olympians to return the favor as they clipped the UM Hawk’s wings with a resounding 92 -72 victory.

Lightning Maclean elevates for the dunk

The Olympians trapping defense produced wonders as they never let go until the end of the game. The Olympians forced the Hawks to numerous turnovers which in turn they translated to baskets. Leading the Olympians are their PBA Developmental League campaigners namely Cagayan de Oro native “Lightning” Maclean Sabellina who was a cut above the rest after scoring 23 points and hauling down 12 rebounds and swatting 3 shots. Sabellina who was recruited from the STI College Cagayan de Oro basketball team has now blossomed into a full pledge star as his three rim rattling dunks was tremendously applauded by the pre-dominant UM crowd.

Viernes cannot weather the Storm

The Olympians controlled the game early and had leads of three to five in the opening quarter which ended with the STI team on top 21 -16. In the second quarter the Olympians tried to put more distance between them and the Hawks as the men in yellow slowed down last year’s MVP Eugene Torres as a slew of defenders gave Torres only minimal space to operate. At the same time, Mythical 5 selectee and D-league point guard Jeff Viernes found it hard to penetrate the Olympians defense. The result was a ten point lead for the Olympians at the end of the half.

Excellent Quarterbacking by Hessed Gabo

The third quarter saw the Hawks open the second half with consecutive baskets to cut the Olympians lead. With the score pegged at 46 – 40 in favor of the Olympians, the Band of Zeus mercilessly pounded on the Hawks as veterans Norman Ihalas, Jasper Melano, Ivan Moreno, Lester Bocablo and RK Morales took turns in scoring and made life harder for the Hawks as they alternately stole the ball, got the rebound and ran the break which resulted in a 15 point third quarter lead 61 – 46.

Lightning Maclean dunks the ball again

By the fourth quarter, the Hawks unleashed their final stand by unloading 26 points but was unfortunately matched by the Olympians everytime the Hawks would scored. Everytime the defending champs would start a run, Maclean Sabellina was there to douse cold water on the Hawks efforts. Sabellina’s energy was unmatched and that was what he used to infect his other team mates as the Olympians served notice to the rest of the league that every one who would lay claim to the NAASCU title would have to pass through them.

undergoal action

In the other games, the New Era Hunters beat the City of Pasay Eagles 66 – 62, the Centro Escolar University Scorpions beat Our Lady of Fatima Phoenix 77 – 69.

The scores:


Sabellina 23, Moreno 12, Melano 12, Bocablo 11, Morales 9, Gabo 7, Ihalas 6, Ohandja 5, Ablaza 4, Bautista 3, Riva 0, Chavez 0, Labis 0,


Torres 17, Viernes 14, Ruiz 13, Manuel 12, Ibay 10, Ancheta 4, Flores 2, Bonleon 0

Quarterscores: 21 -16, 41 - 31, 61 - 46, 92 - 72

Ivan Moreno for two

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Blue Eagles win fourth straight

Kiefer Ravena dunking the ball

The University of the East Red Warriors started the first quarter of their game against FEU with a 12 -6 lead which was punctuated on good defense on the Tamaraws. That was the same intensity they were in against the three time defending champions which caused the Blue Eagles to fumble five times in the first quarter and miss all their nine three pointers in the whole of the first half. The game was reminiscent of their game against the UP Maroons two years ago which they lost but this time around the Blue Eagles were wiser to address their shooting and once again relied on their number one advantage – Greg Slaughter.

Slaugter was big inside

Just like the Adamson Falcons, the Warriors were no match to the height and might of the seven foot Ateneo center who had a double – double game as he scored 18 points and pulled down 10 rebounds enroute to a 73 -61 victory of the Ateneo Blue Eagles against the only winless team in the league, the UE Red Warriors. What was not seen in those 18 points of Slaughter was the way he patrolled the middle that made the Warriors take jumpers and shied away from any lane incursions and drives to the hoop because of the monstrous presence of the Blue Eagle slotman. As a result, the Warriors first free throw attempt came at the end of the third quarter when Slaughter was resting on the bench.

Ateneo stars waiting for their turn

The Blue Eagles started the second quarter on a bad note as most of their shooters were shooting blanks and was having a hard time getting a field goal with their points only coming from the free throw line. The Eagles eventually shot a horrendous 4 of 22 with the Warriors also shooting badly themselves with a 4 of 11 clip. The Blue Eagle second unit did not help as much as the game turned into ugly ball since no one was having good shots thanks to the good defense on both sides. Te Blue Eagles opened the third quarter with a 10 - 4 run to put a little more distance between them and the Warriors as Greg Slaughter towered over his opponents once again. The Blue Eagles finally controlled the game and ended the third quarter comfortyably on top 51 – 39.

Greg dumps it in

In the fourth quarter the rest of the starting unit contributed this time with Kirk Long scoring off drives, Emman Monfort on a three pointer and off a steal and Nico Salva on the stripe which led to the Eagles getting their biggest lead 65 -47 with three minutes left. The Blue Eagles were also treated to another show when Kirk Long riffled a pass to Kiefer Ravena who in turn attacked the basket like an NBA star and dunked the ball that sent the Blue side of the coliseum into a state of celebration. Slaughter had a dunk in the first quarter off a fastbreak and so did Ravena as the fabulous freshmen led the team in scoring once more. The excitement goes on as every Ateneo game proves to be a roller coaster ride.

Emman stands tall

The scores:

Ateneo (73)

Slaughter 18, Ravena 13, Salva 10, Monfort 9, Long 9, Tiongson 8, Chua 2, Erram 2, Austria 2, Pessumal 0, Sumalinog 0, Gonzaga 0, Golla 0

UE (61)

Zamar 13, Noble 11, Javier 9, Santos 7, de Leon 6, Sumang 5, Enguio 5, Chavez 2, Tagarda 2, Flores 1, Montelibano 0, Sumido 0, Duran 0

Quarter scoring: 16-14, 28-25, 51-39, 73-61

Thanks Erwin Cabbab for the pictures

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Blue Eagles rout Bulldogs 86 - 62

Ravena vs. Parks: This is not the PBA, this is the UAAP

Bobby Ray Parks put on a fourth quarter offensive display as the former memphis star scored 13 points in the last few minutes of the fourth quarter to outscore fellow rookie Kiefer Ravena 20-13 in the battle of talented rookies in the 74th UAAP. But then again it was not a one on one battle, it was a game between the league leading Ateneo Blue Eagles and the equally talented National University Bulldogs which the three time defending champs won 86 – 62 for their third straight win. The Bulldogs dropped their second game and are now 1 and 2 and are bunched in sixth place in the early goings of the UAAP.

Oping Sumalinog had good contributions

Parks, The flamboyant forward who dropped 30 points against the Maroons scored only three first half points and four third quarter points as five year Blue Eagle veteran Kirk Long put the cuffs on the high scoring Georgia Tech recruit. The 13 fourth quarter outburst of Parks was when the rest of the third string Blue Eagles were already on the floor and the game was already beyond recall with the Ravena and the rest of the starting unit already resting on the bench.

Beam me up Scottie: Captain Kirk Scores

Before the game, there were talks that the Bulldogs will most probably give the three time champs a big scare since the champs were eliminated by the Bulldogs in the Fr. Martin’s Cup. Unfortunately, the settings were different and the Blue Eagles were all business as rookie center Greg Slaughter patrolled the middle with much authority as the Bulldogs failed to score outside and tried to go inside but were either thwarted by the Ateneo big men or were forced to turnovers by the guards. At the end of the third quarter, the final score was the only thing unsettled as the Blue Eagles raced to a 69 – 37 lead.

Kiefer was all over

Greg Slaughter scored 15 points, Kiefer Ravena 13, Nico Salva 12 and Kirk Long 11 as the balanced attack of the Blue Eagles spelled the difference as the inexperience of the Bulldogs showed. Former youth campaigner Gelo Alolino sank two three pointers enroute to 11 points while last year’s Mythical 5 selectee Emmanuel Mbe added 10 points but all of them were in the first half. The Blue Eagles were so sharp in this game that comebacking Oping Sumalinog scored 7 points, point guard Juami Tiongson sank two three pointers for 6 points and second year center JP Erram scored 6 points, and blocked 2 shots all in the last three minutes of play. Just in their third game the Blue Eagles are gelling which just shows that there are better thigns to come.

Parks on the drive


ADMU 86 -- Slaughter 15, Ravena 13, Salva 12, Long 11, Sumalinog 7, Monfort 7, Erram 6, Tiongson 6, Capacio 2, Gonzaga 2, Chua 2, Austria 2, Pessumal 1, Cipriano 0, Estrada 0, Golla 0

NU 62 -- Parks 20, Alolino 11, Mbe 10, Celda 7, Javillonar 6, Celiz 2, Khobutin 2, Magat 2, labing-isa 1, Terso 1, Villamor 0, Rono 0, Eman 0, Ignacio 0

Quarter scores: 16-11, 38-20, 69-37, 86-62

Sunday, July 17, 2011

24th STI Leaders Convention






Saturday, July 16, 2011

Kiefer shows the UAAP what he can do

Baseline Jumper by the Phenom

A lot of basketball fans equate good players through their offense and not their all around game. In his forgettable debut against the Adamson Falcons, Kiefer Ravena gave way to 7 foot rookie Greg Slaughter as the big difference in that game was a head above the rest as he willed his way for an Ateneo victory with co-rookie Kiefer shooting only the ball once and missing. The kid understands that his offense was not yet needed against Adamson since it was not Ateneo’s game plan for the guards to score but for the big boys to muscle their way in. Unfortunately because of that decision he was castigated and branded as all hype and no bite since almost all the other highly touted rookies debuted impressively. In his second game in the UAAP Kiefer Ravena showed what he can do when given the chance to score as he jump-started the Ateneo’s offense by scoring 14 first quarter points enroute to a 22 point first half explosion to help the Blue Eagles win over the Dela Salle Green Archers 81-72.

Rebound Play

Ravena who came off the bench in his first game started this time around and scored six straight points in the opening minute to give the Blue Eagles a 6 – 0 lead and then torched the Green Archers with an array of shots that no rookie has ever done before. Its just like telling the league that this is what you are up to if he wants to score. Ravena ended up with a double double as he eventually scored 24 points added ten rebounds, five steals and two assists which shows his all around game and the great thing here is that he is only in his second college game. Ravena also showed how good his defense is as he tapped the ball off five year veteran Simon Atkins’ hands and scored on an unmolested lay up. At the end of the first half and the Blue Eagles ahead 41 - 30, the Green Archers never knew what hit them as they never found the formula that made them beat the Blue Eagles twice in the off-season.

First Half reads # 15 with 22 pts

If Kiefer Ravena owned the first half, the third quarter saw fourth year forward Nico Salva deliver the points and his defensive tenacity sparked the defensive intensity of the Blue Eagles . Salva continued where Ravena left off scoring on drives and jumpers. The Blue Eagles eventually got their biggest lead after Ravena stole the ball once again and fed off a sprinting Kirk Long to score on a fastbreak and take a 58 -39 lead with 2 minutes and 46 seconds left. At this point Coach Dindo Pumaren has had enough and sued for time. The Green Archers then regrouped and went back to their patented full court defense that produced two consecutive turnovers that sparked another De La Salle comeback. The Green Archers eventually closed out the quarter with a strong 10 – 4 run to cut the Blue Eagle lead to 13, 62 – 49 which gave the Green Archers more breathing room.

Long vs Marata

In the fourth quarter , comebacking guard LA Revilla singlehandedly willed the Green Archers comeback as he led the DLSU attack by scoring 12 fourth quarter points to cut the lead of the Blue Eagles to five 70 – 75 with 1:03 left.Revilla scored on lay ups, short jumpers and went 4 of 6 from the line as the Blue Eagles had a hard time stopping the comebacking point guard who led the Archers with 22 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals but could not get enough support from the rest of the Green archers the way Kiefer had with the Blue Eagles.

Kiefer for two

Emman Monfort closed out the Green Archers as he sank six consecutive free throws to give the Blue Eagles their second win in as many games. In the Blue Eagles first game rookie Greg Slaughter shined and now its another rookie leading the way. The thing that excites me the most is that this is just the second game of the Blue Eagles and is clearly an idication of finer things to come for the Hail Mary team.


The scores:

Ateneo 81

Ravena 24, Salva 18, Monfort 10, Long 10, Slaughter 7, Golla 6, Tiongson 2, Gonzaga 2, Chua 2, Capacio 0, Sumalinog 0, Austria 0

De La Salle 72

Revilla 22, Tampus 10, Torres 9, de la Paz 9, Marata 9, Van Opstal 5, Villanueva 4, Mendoza 2, Atkins 2, Sara 0, Gotladera 0, Vosotros 0, Paredes 0, Webb 0

Quarter scoring: 23-16, 41-30, 62-49, 81-72

thanks to diana moraleda for the pictures

Friday, July 15, 2011

Ocean Park Adventure in Hong Kong

Myrah, Lou and Maricel







Sunday, July 10, 2011

Blue Eagles squeak past Falcons

Greg Slaughter on a jumper

Opening day jitters. Yes it still happens to veterans as the three time defending champion Ateneo de Manila Blue Eagles were able to regain their composure in the fourth quarter just in time to squeak past the Adamson Falcons with an ugly 55 – 51 win. It was the 29th straight win of the Blue Eagles against the Falcons who last beat them in 1997. Rookie slotman Greg Slaughter was just what the doctor ordered for the Blue Eagles as the Smart Gilas center scored 23 points pulled down 8 rebounds, had 2 assists and 2 blocked shots as he literally stood head above the others.

A monster jam by Greg Slaughter

The Blue Eagles opened the first quarter like a house on fire as Slaughter scored the first four points while forward Nico Salva and Emman Monfort joined the frey as the Blue Eagles got an early 8 – 2 lead in the first 6:50 of the quarter. Fifth year guard Kirk Long helped put the Blue Eagles up 16 - 5 as they had their way with the San Marcelino five but after a time out the Falcons regrouped, tightened their defense and unleashed a 7-0 run which was sparked by Jeric CaƱada to end the first quarter and have the Falcons within striking distance of the Blue Eagles as the quarter ended with the Falcons down 12 - 16.

Kiefer was scoreless in this one

Former Blue Eaglet Kiefer Ravena came off the bench to play but unfortunately, the leech like defense of the Falcons prevented him to shoot the ball as the Blue Eagles went exclusively to Slaughter with the big man responding with 8 second quarter points. As a result, the Falcons once again tightened their defense as the Blue Eagle’s second team suddenly couldn’t buy a basket. The second quarter ended witht the Blue Eagles still on top 33 – 27.

Chua on a turn around

The start of the second half saw the Blue Eagles fire blanks and their shooting turned cold as their shots were not falling and their lay ups were rimming out. The Soaring Falcons eventually took advantage in this chink in the armor of the Blue Eagles as the Falcons opened the quarter with an 8 – 0 run to take the upperhand 34 – 33 with 6:50 left in the quarter. Alex Nuyles and Lester Alvarez waxed hot as they sank three three – pointers between them to put the Falcons ahead 44 -39. The Eagles eventually countered by going to Slaughter once more and their defense kept them in the game and kept Adamson from breaking away as the Falcons ended the quarter on top 44 -43.

Bacon on the drive

The fourth quarter was like a chess match with both teams calculating each team’s move and both teams found it hard to puncture the hoop. The Falcons raced to a 51 – 44 lead with 6:58 left as the hot shooting of the Falcons gave them the lead and an upset was in the making. Unfortunately for the Falcons the Blue Eagles showed the stuff that they are made off by shutting down the Falcons the rest of the way. The Falcons were forced to two 24 second violations and their top playmaker Lester Alvarez who was expected to explode in the fourth quarter came up short in the face of the Ateneo defense and was even blocked by Slaughter in a crucial stretch of the game. Kirk Long and Emman Monfort closed out the game with Kirk scoring off a lay up and Monfort putting the game away with his free throws.

Nico Salva on the drive

The Blue Eagles shot a woeful 17 of 44 from the field with a 38.6 % but they limited the Falcons to 26.2 % shooting. The Falcons were 6 of 22 from beyond the arc while the Eagles were only 1 of 10 from the three point area. Also, the Falcons were 11 of 11 from the Free throw line while the Blue Eagles missed 9 shots, 18 of 27. The Blue Eagles outrebounded the Falcons 42-34 while most of the statistics were somewhat all the same. It was an ugly win for the Ateneo but as they say we can take it.

Captain Kirk on the drive

The scores

Ateneo 55 – Slaughter 23, Long 10, Salva 8, Monfort 6, Erram 3,Gonzaga 3, Austria 2, Ravena 0, Tiongson 0, Sumalinog 0, Golla 0, Chua 0

Adamson 51 – Nuyles 11, Alvarez 8, Canada 6, Camson 6, Cabrera 6, Manyara 5, Lozada 3, Etrone 2, Brondial 2, Colina 2

Quarters: 16-12, 33-27 43-44, 55-51

Another two points by Nico Salva

Sunday, July 3, 2011

A look at the Blue Eagle rookies

Kiefer on the drive

Coach Norman Black was very excited when he was interviewed after winning his third UAAP Title and he said “We have a good recruiting class and if 2008 was good then this one will definitely be better!” He can see the excitement in his eyes but was a little reluctant to elaborate because it took time for top prospect Kiefer Ravena to finalize his college plans. Eventually the Phenom stayed home to the delight of the Blue and White.

The Phenom takes his act
to the Blue Eagles

As proven by their stellar play in the Flying V Filoil Tournament the Phenom Kiefer Ravena is not your average 17 year old rookie for he is years beyond his age in terms of basketball IQ. In his first game in the Filoil-Tourney his claws proved mightier than San Beda Red Lion’s paws as he scored 25 points to seal the deal. With him in the team, SHOWTIME will always be a part of the team’s play because everytime he holds the ball you are bound to see an amazing display of ball wizardry which will eventually translate into a great play.

Ateneo Center Greg Slaughter

Add to that a hulking 6-11 center who has played against the best international talents then you can forget who graduated and who did not make it to the team this year. Greg Slaughter gives the Blue Eagles another inside presence that can be the answer to the skyscrapers that entered the UAAP this year namely the 6-7 duo of DLSU and the 6-11 center of FEU. Greg’s international experience will usher well for the Blue Eagles and his shot blocking will be a big plus for the interior defense of the Blue Eagles.

Gwynne Capacio

Not only that, add to the mix former De La Salle Zobel Junior Archer hotshot Gwynne Capacio who also sat out last year to play for the National Youth team in Yemen. Capacio has recently been very fragile as various injuries kept him from a lot of training but will definitely be ready to play once called by Coach Norman.

Von Pessumal

If Ravena is the Michael Jordan of the Blue Eaglets last year then Von Pessumal can be his Scottie Pippen. Offensively sound when needed but defense flows in his blood as evidenced in his masterful shut down of Gwyne when they played for the 2009 UAAP Juniors Championship.


Last among the rookies is unknown to most but a gem in the making if handled well. In the 2007 NCAA Juniors Ryan Buenafe was the topscorer with 32 ppg and Nico Salva followed suit with a 29 ppg average and the third topscorer then was a JRU Light Bomber guard who averaged 28 ppg, he is non other than Bon Jovi Cipriano. He entered the Ateneo quitely at the same year that Salva and Buenafe’s rookie year but was sidelined with an ACL injury that more than hampered the way he scores. He was one of the more prolific shooters of the Ateneo Team B and finally we can see his true value.

Gwynne's focus

Recruitment has always been a problem of the Blue Eagles in the dark ages but now it seems like we have been getting quality student athletes that will eventually help out in Ateneo’s quest to be the best team in the UAAP. Stay tuned!