ATENEO VS SAN BEDA AT GRUDGE GAMES OF CHAMPIONS 2003 TODAY

Makati Coliseum, June 24, 2003 (Star) Like De La Salle-Letran, there will be no love lost between two former NCAA teams, Ateneo and San Beda, when they clash today at the resumption of the Grudge Games of Champions League 2003 at the Makati Coliseum.

Both the Green Archers and the Blue Eagles were once part of the premier collegiate league in the country, the NCAA, before circumstances that spun out control forced school administrators to jump ship and cross over to the other side, the younger, more restrained UAAP.

This was decades ago and since then La Salle has won more than its fair share of UAAP championships, thanks to the coaching prowess of Franz Pumaren.

Last year, however, Joel Banal, picking up from where multi-titled coach Joe Lipa had left, led Ateneo to the Promised Land, ending 14 years of championship drought and accomplishing the feat at the expense of its mortal hardcourt enemy La Salle.

Ateneo and La Salle will once more cross swords at least twice in the coming UAAP wars, and once more perhaps, during the Champions League finals in November.

But before that happens, these two former NCAA teams need to square it up first with two old rivals in the Grudge Games.

Last Saturday, the Green Archers dodged the jousting spears thrown at them by the Letran Knights of Louie Alas, 87-77.

JV Casio had 20 points, 11 in the fourth quarter, while Mark Cardona added 18, Joseph Yeo 13 and Tyrone Tang 11 points.

Jonathan Aldave had 18 points for the inexperienced Knights, who dropped the lance on their foot by turning the ball over 30 times, yielding 30 points to La Salle off those miscues. The Eagles, now led by Rich Alvarez, are expected to use the Red Lions game as barometer of how far they can go in defending their UAAP title without the inside presence of 6-5 center Enrico Villanueva.

In the first game, Philippine Maritime Institute takes on Emilio Aguinaldo College.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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