Ateneo Blue Eagles kick off UAAP Season 84 with win over FEU

The Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles got their title bid off to a victorious start as they walloped the Far Eastern University Tamaraws, 79-70, in the UAAP Season 85 men's basketball tournament on Sunday at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

Forthsky Padrigao and BJ Andrade led the difference-making run in the fourth frame for the Blue Eagles, working together to score crucial points during a 14-5 run to take a 14-point lead with 6:07 left, 69-55. But the Tamaraws inched to within five at the 1:08 mark on a Patrick Sleat drive but that would be the closest they could get, 70-75.

This as Padrigao drained a long three-pointer with 38.5 seconds to go to put the Blue Eagles back up by eight.

"Scrappy (win) for sure which is nothing new for the first UAAP game of the season I think that's the standard line for most coaches," said Ateneo head coach Tab Baldwin.

"I think we have big players who make big shots which is not really the formula the one I like. Nonetheless, it's excellent to have players who have the toughness to take those shots."

Padrigao launched 19 points with seven assists and six rebounds, while Andrade delivered 15 points of his own.

Dave Ildefonso and Ange Kouame tallied double-doubles in points and rebounds with 14 points and 12 rebounds and 12 markers and 14 boards, respectively.

L-jay Gonzales had 19 points founded on five triples while Sleat unloaded 15 of his 17 points in the second half.