Rookie Jolo Mendoza shone down the stretch as Ateneo de Manila University outlasted the Mapua Institute of Technology, 90-77, to advance to the quarterfinals of the 2016 FilOil Flying V Preseason Tournament Thursday at the Arena in San Juan.
The victory also allowed the Blue Eagles to bounce back from their huge loss to archrival De La Salle University last weekend.
“We weren’t too happy with our defensive effort and intensity, but we’re happy to come up with a win,” said Ateneo coach Sandy Arespacochaga.
“We’re happy that the things that we want to improve on, we’re getting some progress there,” he added. “The coaching staff is getting some looks on what we need to improve on, and what we can continue to do.”
“Different players have been stepping up for us and they’re trying to figure out how they can help the team,” he also said.
Mendoza scored all of his 11 points in the fourth quarter, nine of which came in the 15-2 run that gave Ateneo total control of the contest after Mapua had forced a 75-all deadlock.
The Cardinals dropped to 1-6 in the tournament.