So far so good.

Aaron R. Vicencio
Published in
4 min readSep 29, 2019


Ateneo defeats UP, 89–63 to sweep the first round.

Kouame had 19 points, 15 rebounds and 7 blocks.

So far no one has solved the Ateneo defensive puzzle. UST came close. UP controlled a half. But the puzzle keeps turning. Ateneo’s deep roster has contributed in their own way through seven games.

I saw Matt Nieto’s eyes when Spencer brought the ball up. In the next defensive possession, Nieto stripped him and went on a one man fast break. Spencer didn’t enter the game again.
He got into Manzo’s head. Pressuring and baiting the Maroons’ point guard.
Series of a rare explosion of emotion — Nieto runs to Wong after Matt missed a backdoor behind the back pass from the post.

Nieto had a season high 18 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists. He was also aggressive in attacking the top of the key pick and roll defense of UP, making them rotate and scramble.

UP swarmed Ateneo in the first quarter. Controlling the pace with good defense, quick plays, and excellent box out sequences.
Bo Perasol from from first quarter to his ejection.

Maybe it was all a ruse. As UP was gaining confidence — Ateneo made progress from the second to the third quarters. From being down by 6 to leading by 26.

Thirdy Ravena had a quiet 13 points, 3 rebounds, and 3 assists.

Will Navarro had 14 points and 6 rebounds while it was SJ Belangel who changed the game in late first and early in the second. He tied his career high with 11 points and 3 assists and zero turnovers.

But throughout the game it was Ange Kouame’s stellar play. His length overwhelmed on both ends of the floor.

Round two begins on Saturday, October 5.



Aaron R. Vicencio
Editor for

Photography with space, landscape, and memory. Currently teaching at Ateneo de Manila University