By Gian Franco |
Kiefer Ravena pushed the Far Eastern University into foul trouble in the second half to help Ateneo University cruise past a bottleneck game, 78-81, on August 3 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Sunday.
The Blue Eagles landed on the solo second spot (4-1) trailing behind National University remaining on top with solo 5-1 standing.
Kiefer Ravena’s stuffed game-high 23 points mostly from his 11 of 15 free throws, 5 of 15 on the field and 2 of 5 beyond the arc. He also swept the glass with 5 rebounds.
He came back strong this time after he admitted fatigue from playing three straight games caused his shooting slump against the NU Bulldogs (July 26) that pricked them their first defeat this season.
True to his promise, he distributed the work among the boys and dished out 7 assists to lessen his load. Chris Newsome scored 17 points coming off from 7 of 9 FG and grabbed 7 rebounds.
Nico Elorde and Von Pessumal added 12 points and 2 rebounds apiece.
Kiefer Ravena pinned 7 straight points, including a triple, to exploit 66-68 lead into 66-75 breathing space. The Tolomia-led squad answered 8-3 spread to diminish the deficit again to one jumper away.
The Tamaraws however were caught in foul trouble in the last 13 seconds that landed Ravena on the line to sink both of his clutch free throws, 76-80.
Mark Belo spread thin the deficit back to two. Still, that was two points shy that forced Francis Tamsi to foul Ravena for another costly chance to convert 1 of 2 on his last act at the charity stripe.
Hoping to equalize on the final two seconds, Tolomia almost nailed a triple hurled from half-court to buy the Tamaraws an overtime. Belo converted 22 points and 6 rebounds while Tolomia added 15 points.
Anthony Hargrove and Pogoy Roger left the court with 13 points and 8 points respectively before they were subbed out as they broke Tamaraws’ slightest chance to win when they committed a total of 5 fouls in the second half.
They saw themselves falling to fourth spot with the defending champions De La Salle University and last season finalists University of Sto Tomas.