Eagles return to Finals; Tamaraws force do-or-die showdown vs AdamsonAfter the Blue Eagles' sorry loss to the Adamson Soaring Falcons that ended their hopes for a perfect season, Ateneo head coach Norman Black predicted that in their next game, a Final Four encounter against the UST Growling Tigers, they'll find out what the Eagles are made of, what the team's character is when faced with adversity.
By Jasmine W. Payo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—Ateneo booked a fourth straight Finals appearance Thursday even as Far Eastern University forged a winner-take-all duel with Adamson for the last title berth in the UAAP men’s basketball tournament.
The Eagles bucked the absence of the cramps-stricken Greg Slaughter in the endgame to eliminate gutsy University of Santo Tomas, 69-66.
The Tigers unloaded three consecutive triples to trim the Eagles’ 63-53 lead to just a point, 67-66, with 5.8 seconds remaining before Nico Salva sealed the win with two free throws, with 2.7 ticks left.
Well, we found out, alright: the Blue Eagles are warriors (sorry, University of the East).
After taking both their elimination round games against the Growling Tigers by an average margin of 19 points, the Blue Eagles narrowly escaped with a 3-point victory, their second Final Four win in three years over their Season 69 Finals tormentors. So now, for the fourth straight year the road to the Season 74 Men's basketball championship will have to go through Loyola Heights.