An Special: Ateneo-La Salle rivalry retro 31

17 10 2007

This piece was lifted from the NCAA archive. The Year was 1975. 50 years since the NCAA was established, this article describes the rivalry that is – Ateneo vs. La Salle, The Blue Eagles against the Green Archers. For the De La Salle and Ateneo fans, students, community and Alumni, thank you for supporting us and enjoy reading.

Blue and Green, don’t the produce a great combination? Oh- yes – especially when Blue means Ateneo and Green is La Salle’s namesake.

At the Araneta coliseum recently high-octaned action turned into explosive consternation as the La Salle Green Archers spotted a three-point margin amidst a deafening uproar of protest from the Ateneo crowd, 94-91.

In so far as the scoreboard and the non-Ateneans were concerned, the score could not be otherwise; for the second consecutive years, the deadly arrows of the taft-based archers had pierced the Blue Eagles’ unguarded heels.

“So what?” asked one Ateneo fan. “We’ll get them some other time.”

This rivalry between Ateneo and La Salle stemmed 50 years back when the seed of the NCAA first started to germinate.

“It all started as a rivalry in the field of academic excellence,” recalls one NCAA observer. “Inevitably it spread into sports.”

This explanation sounds shallow because it really is.

Actually it is the unending lectures by priests-teachers to their students about the virtue of being loyal to one’s alma mater that built up the school spirit of the NCAA goers.

These loyalties go as far as defending with their fists when necessary; the brawls that often follow the games outside the coliseum are as classic as the encounters inside the hoopla.

As the years showered the NCAA with enough charm to be courted by a crowd of admirers, it has become apparent that La Salle and Ateneo have turned fanatics.

For how would one explain the presence of coeds in a match between what are supposed to be exclusive boys’ schools? Or the presence of a man aged sixty-six in a coliseum peopled by students aged six and above.

Not only that, the old man can chant his school’s cheers as if he graduated from college only a year ago.

That is college spirit for you; it lingers with the years – like the paper planes that rained the coliseum.

No, the sixty year olds did not make the flying objects – it could be a scheme of a sixty year old lad.

But who cares? Only the La Sallites do. For the Ateneans, it was a day the memory of which should be forgotten and buried. would like to thank the NCAA and the San Beda College Library for this article.


UAAP Weekly October 2, 2007

2 10 2007

Charlie Cuna, Kim Lesaca and Mike Abasolo talks about the Final 3 series – UST vs. Ateneo, the Ateneo vs. La Salle dual face off for the 2nd Finals Slot and the UAAP Finals featuring the UE Red Warriors and the De La Salle University Green Archers.

I Am Not Going Anywhere….YET!

30 09 2007

Ateneo played a gritty game and wanted to take no chances. After a slow start and allowing La Salle to take an early 7 point lead, the Blue Eagles just would not give up and even overtook La Salle in the first quarter. La Salle however came back and ended the quarter ahead by 1 point.

With Norman Black looking for combinations to match up against La Salle’s sticky defense Ateneo could just not find a way to break it. But Ateneo kept La Salle scoreless in the first 3 minutes of the 2nd quarter and took the lead which they managed to keep……wait….what am I doing here?

Forget this politically correct write-up I was going to make. In front of a crowd of more than 23,000 people, La Salle won the game 65-60 and is now in the finals. HOW SWEET IT IS! First it was 2 is better than 1. Now it’s 2 is better than 3.

Coach Franz Pumaren promised a victory and the whole Lasallian community got what we wanted. Pumaren outcoached a befuddled Norman Black, who just could not find a combination to break the patent Franz Pumaren defense. Black was given a lesson on the difference between college and PBA coaching.

There were 2 things La Salle did today that made a difference. The first and foremost was excellent game clock management and second the players executed what the coach instructed.

When the 2 minute mark was called by the barker and La Salle up by 7, the tension on the La Salle side was so thick, you could cut it with a knife.

It was the best end game that the Green Archers had played all year. They did not hurry the shot and took the ball to the basket. With less than a minute to go and La Salle up by 5, Ateneo’s Baclao hits a 3 that cut the lead to 2.

The turning point of the game was when La Salle was up by 2, takes a shot and Pocholo Villanueva grabbing the offensive rebound. He brought the ball back to midcourt before running down the clock and then making the 2 pointer from the side. Ateneo couldn’t get a basket on their offense and La Salle would get the defensive rebound.

This is where Black really messed up. Ateneo was not in penalty. When a team is down by 5 with 2 minutes to go, the team behind should be in penalty because it is the only way you can get the ball back. La Salle is known for its foul shooting woes but Black could not take advantage of it. When Ateneo finally committed 3 successive fouls to get into penalty, they fouled OJ Cua, who missed both his shots. But it was too late. Ateneo could not make a shot. They fouled JV Casio and he hit his 2 foul shots.

After his awful last game, Pocholo Villanueva finally showed the leadership and experience that was expected of him. He was the player who managed that game clock in the end game. TY Tang took Villanueva’s cue and masterfully directed the offense.

Also having a great game was PJ Walsham. He did not take bad shots but instead concentrated on rebounds and defending the inside, which is what that bulk and size he has is best put to use. He kept Ford Arao stifled and ineffective.

Bader Malabes, though offensively still a feast or famine player, made up for it on the defensive end by taking Chris Tiu totally out of sync. Tiu just could not break free as Malabes stuck to him like bread on butter.

Two players who also gave quality minutes were OJ Cua and Ferdinand. Cua hit some clutch shots in the early going and stood his ground on defense. Ferdinand, who is becoming my favorite player, is a boy in a man’s body but today he showed that he will be a vital cog in La Salle’s future.

Not to be forgotten are TY Tang, JV Casio and Rico Maeirhofer. Tang, who took the entire 2 rounds of the regular season to finally break out had fire in his eyes today. From the opening toss you could see he wanted this game more than anyone else.

The mild mannered Casio, who has been nursing a injury for the last 3 games, may not have hit most his step back 3s but it was the intangibles that made him so effective. His gutsy drives to the basket and his pesky defense will make Salamat and Escueta have nightmares for days to come.

Rico Maierhofer, who was playing with a severely sprained ankle, fought for the rebounds and made the inside plays when it counted. His presence alone under the basket is enough to intimidate the offense.

Lastly, what can one say about Coach Franz Pumaren? Every time they count him out, he pulls a rabbit out the hat. Everytime he has lemons, he makes great tasting lemonade. This team was counted out. Some were calling for his head. But he just keeps finding a way to make La Salle a consistent powerhouse in the UAAP.

This will be a season that Ateneo can call the “WHAT IF SEASON”. What if they beat FEU in the first round? What if they beat NU in their last game? What if they won one of those close games against UE? What if it would not have been a step ladder but a Final Four? What if they won today? The fact of the matter is that they now have a year to think about their season while La Salle is in the finals.

To many of us proud Lasallians, this is one year that winning the finals will be icing on the cake.


Ateneo Dual Meet Champs, 3-2, but missed UAAP Season 70 Finals

30 09 2007

Cholo Villanueva, before saying goodbye to the UAAP, assured everybody that there will be a family feud in the finals of the 70th UAAP men’s basketball tournament.

Villanueva delivered the key baskets in the final period as De La Salle University bamboozled Ateneo De Manila University, 65-60, for a title-showdown with unbeaten University of the East last September 30, 2007 at the Araneta Coliseum.

The 6-foot-2 combo guard Villanueva, playing his last year in the UAAP, fired 9 of his 13 points in the pivotal fourth quarter with one crucial offensive rebound in the same period to seal the victory that mattered most.

“This is my last Ateneo game because I’m a graduating student,” said Villanueva, who shot 5-of-8 in the two-point field. “So I really want to make this game very, very memorable, and I did.”

After Villanueva’s lay up that provided the Green Archers their biggest advantage, 55-46, with 5:29 minutes to go in the last quarter, Eric Salamat scored on a three-point play to trim down the Blue Eagles’ deficit to 55-49 with 4:56 minutes to go.

But Villanueva stretched the La Salle advantage to nine, 58-49, after firing a triple with 4:19 minutes left in the game.

Despite Ateneo’s effort to reduce the deficit to 55-60 in the last two-minute mark, Villanueva, again, came up with an answer by hitting a jumper to give La Salle a 62-55 cushion with a minute remaining.

The Blue Eagles, still resisting, had narrowed the gap to only two, 60-62, after Clifford Arao scored on two free throws and Severino Baclao made a triple with 11 seconds left.

Ateneo’s attempts to come back were futile as it absorbed two turnovers, forcing them to send Joseph Casio and Rico Maierhofer to the free throw line.

Casio converted both free throws and Maierhofer split his charities with few seconds remaining before the buzzer.

“I guess two is better than three,” said La Salle mentor Franz Pumaren, referring to the Green Archers’ three losses and two wins against archrival Ateneo this season. “I told my players that they worked hard for this so they deserved to be in the finals.”

Ateneo extended the series to a do-or-die game after winning last September 27 via a 65-64 squeaker through Chris Tiu’s breakaway lay up.

Tiu, who only had 10 points, scored only two points in the final period due to La Salle’s outstanding defense.

“We learned our mistake in our previous losses to Ateneo particularly last week,” said Pumaren. “I’m glad we are able to solve the Ateneo puzzle.”

It looked like La Salle had prepared an effective game plan this time as it controlled the game the rest of the way after leading the first (16-14), second (29-26) and third (48-43) quarters.

After they were out-rebounded last Thursday (Sept. 27), 41-29, the Green Archers, this time, had 51 rebounds – including 19 offensive rebounds – against 36 for the Blue Eagles and registered only 6 offensive rebounds.

Also in their previous game, Ateneo registered 23-out-of-49 (46.9%) from the field against La Salle’s 22-out-of-63 (34.9%) to help them stretch the series.

But this time, La Salle hit 27-out-of-73 (37%) total field goals while Ateneo made only 18-out-of-56 (32.1%).

Playmaker Tyrone Tang had 12 points, including two triples, while Maierhofer added 12 points and 10 rebounds. Casio had a spectacular performance with 10 points, 6 assists and 6 rebounds. Arao paced Ateneo with 14 points and Salamat finished with 10.

Franz Pumaren will face younger brother Dindo, head coach of the University of the East Red Warriors in Game one of their best-of-three Finals, called by many as the league’s newest ‘family feud’, on Thursday (October 4).

“He wished me good luck,” said Franz Pumaren when asked by reporters regarding Dindo’s message before this game. “I think we will talk after the season is over (he laughs).”

Individual scores:

La Salle 65: Villanueva 13, Tang 12, Maierhofer 12, Casio 10, Malabes 5, Atkins 5, Walsham 4, Ferdinand 2, Cua 2, Mangahas 0, Barua 0, Co 0.

Ateneo 60: Arao 14, Salamat 10, Tiu 10, Baclao 7, Al-Hussaini 6, Reyes 5, Long 4, Baldos 2, Escueta 2, Monfort 0, Laterre 0.

Quarter scoring: 16-14, 29-26, 48-43, 65-60

Hostile Atenean will be banned

25 09 2007

THREE days after failing to retain its title, host University of Santo Tomas has turned its frustration to an irrepressible diehard fan particularly from Ateneo.

The host school, eliminated by Ateneo last Sunday, 64-69, warned the supporters and fans of the three remaining member schools in the tournament namely, Ateneo, De La Salle and University of the East, to be in their proper places while watching the games.

De La Salle enjoys a twice-to-beat advantage over Ateneo, and the winner in that series will face the flawless UE Red Warriors in the a best of three Finals contest.

Secretary-treasurer Felicitas Francisco, through a letter to the UAAP board, is calling on all leaders of the University of the East, Ateneo and La Salle for “good behaviour in the last two weeks of the tournament.”

Francisco said Commissioner Ed Cordero and an Ateneo fan had to be extricated at the end of the Ateneo-UST KO game last September 23 after the Ateneo alumnus taunted Cordero while he and his crew were leaving the playing area.

“There are some alumni who really don’t behave the way they have been educated,” Francisco said. “Let these (basketball) games be an avenue for further camaraderie among schools, their alumni and students, not for hooliganism.”

Although Francisco did not reveal the name of the Ateneo fan, has managed to identify the fan as Raffy Dayrit according to reliable information from the technical committee.

Dayrit, said by a reliable source who spoke in condition of anonymity, is a 1974 Ateneo High School graduate before moving to University of the Philippines Los Baños, Laguna.

Cordero had identified the heckler and the UAAP board had already banned him from sitting near courtside.

Francisco also said she was infuriated last Sunday when some UST faculty, who had purchased tickets belonging to Ateneo’s side of the Big Dome, were asked to leave by “fans from the other school when the game started.”

UAAP Board Has to Take Responsibility

23 09 2007

The De La Salle Zobel juniors’ basketball team stunned the favored Ateneo Blue Eaglets 76-74, to take the first game of their best of 3 finals. Unfortunately the story does not end there.

The UAAP hierarchy should once again be put under a microscope. It’s not because of some controversial decision that the board has promulgated but rather from a total lack of concern over the security of the lockers of the players. The La Salle Zobel players got their lockers ransacked and lost their wallets, cell phones and all their valuables.

Because of a similar incident during a preseason league where the De La Salle University senior basketball team experienced the same fate, the officials of the Ninoy Aquino Stadium had asked the UAAP to provide 2 security guards for each locker. The league officials had agreed but obviously did not do what they were supposed to. Based on the statement by the stadium officials, the whole unpleasant experience could have been avoided.

When a player, coach or even the fans behave in a manner that the UAAP Board finds offensive, they have a right to extend the sanctions that the Board sees as appropriate and do not hesitate to do so. Now that it is the league who obviously did not perform their obligations, who will sanction them?

First and foremost, doesn’t the league have an obligation to the players to provide security while they play? That’s the least they could do considering that the league earns money out of the sweat of the players. They have to protect them regardless of the division they play for or the sport they participate in.

Secondly, doesn’t the league have an obligation to determine if a venue meets certain basic standards for their participants to play in? The Ninoy Aquino Stadium and the Cuneta Astrodome are awful venues. The UAAP owes it to the players and to the fans that pay to watch the games to make sure that the venues provide adequate security. I have heard that there have even been snatchings just outside these 2 venues.

It is apparent that the people who run the Ninoy Aquino Stadium allow unauthorized people into the locker room area. I cannot believe that thieves were able to enter the locker rooms at exactly the right time, ransack the belongings and make a getaway, without anyone seeing them.

Thirdly, who is going to be held responsible for this “lapse in security”? Knowing that the UAAP had committed to provide 2 security guards outside the lockers; shouldn’t La Salle now bring the UAAP to task and demand that proper restitution be given? It is a consequence that they should impose on themselves in the same way that they mete out consequences to those that have committed infractions.

La Salle has taken all the consequences that the UAAP has thrown at it. It is now the turn of the UAAP board to write a public apology to La Salle for their irresponsibility? The UAAP cannot wash its hands and act as if nothing happened.

Blue Eagles will face the Green Archers for the 4th time, maybe 5th

23 09 2007

“We want La Salle.”

Fans wearing blue and white showed how hungry they are for another match with their ultimate rival De La Salle as the Ateneo Blue Eagles crushed the defending champions, University of Santo Thomas, 69-64, at the Araneta Coliseum last September 23.

The Growling Tigers have now lost their chance of vying for the title in this 70th season of the UAAP.

Ford Arao spearheaded the Blue Eagles’ quest, making 17 points while Chris Tiu and Nonoy Baclao tipped in 14 ad 11 points, respectively. Baclao also tallied 3 blocks.

Jervy Cruz made a huge double-double topping the Growling Tigers’ score sheet with 17 points and grabbing 16 boards. Dylan Ababou and Mark Canlas backed up with 14 and 16 points, respectively.

Arao showed enthusiasm early in the game scoring a hefty 6 points of Ateneo’s 10 in the first quarter that ended 18-10 for UST. In the second period, the Blue Eagles outscored the yellow shirts, 22-12.

Tiu sank an 18-footer with 9:35 in the clock to start the quarter and cut the lead to five. Cruz nailed back to back jumpers with 6:19 minutes to play that stretched the Growling Tigers’ lead back to 7.

Ateneo sparked a big 6-0 run in the final 3 minutes of the quarter including a shot from Jai Reyes that tied the game at 30 with 2:09 minutes in the regulation. The Blue Eagles outran the Growling Tigers, 32-30, before halftime.

In the third quarter, Canlas and Ababou made a combined 13 third quarter points to keep UST’s bid burning.

But Ateneo continued to dominate, igniting another 7-0 run in the first 4 minutes stretch to lengthen their lead to 11, 41-30.

Canlas completed a three-point play with 4:05 minutes left in the clock that cut the lead down to five, 46-41.

Ababou also finished a three-point play after grabbing a miss from Japs Cuan and getting a foul. The lead was down to just two points with 3:32 minutes in regulation.

Francis Allera nailed a basket from behind the arc that made it just a single-point ball game for Ateneo.

Rabeth Al-Hussaini made 3/4 FTs for a 4-point Ateneo lead but Canlas answered back with a beautiful finish with 1:25 minutes in the clock. Ateneo led by four, 55-51, after three quarters.

Both contenders heat up in the fourth quarter after Zion Laterre was called for a pushing foul as he completes a footback.

Eric Salamat completed a three-point play as his hang time move over Cruz awarded him bonus free throws for a 7-point Ateneo lead with 6:28 minutes left in the clock.

Ababou once again took a basket from downtown that cut the lead back to five, 65-60, with 2:11 minutes in the game.

With 5.5 second remaining, Coach Norman Black became furious as the table officials mistakenly called a time out for Ateneo.

With their match against La Salle for the fourth time this year, Coach Norman Black predicted it is going to be a tough game.

Coach Norman Black Post Game Interview:

“We have three days off to prepare. We’ll start concentrating on La Salle tomorrow but for now we’re gonna celebrate the victory.” “Here we go again,” he added.

Individual Scores:


Arao-17, Tiu-14, Baclao-11, Baldos-7, Salamat-6, Al-Hussaini-5, Long-4, Escueta-3, Reyes-2, Nkemakolam-0, Laterre-0, Barracoso-0


Cruz-17, Ababou-16, Canlas-14, Espiritu-5, Allera-5, Mirza-3, Dizon-2, Cuan-2, Taylor-0, Cortez-0.

Quarter Scores: 10-18, 32-30, 55-51, 69-64.