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UE fights for life vs Ateneo

By Josiah Albelda Posted Sep 8th 2013

Roi Sumang and the rest of the UE Red Warriors hope to snap a three-game losing skid and remain in Final Four contention when they take on the Ateneo Blue Eagles.

There are only two slots left.

With the Final Four race going down the wire, University of the East and Ateneo de Manila University battle for survival on Sunday at 2 p.m. in the 76th UAAP men's basketball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Their backs now against the wall, the Red Warriors will attempt to keep their heads above the water when they take on the Blue Eagles, who will be missing suspended coach Bo Perasol.

At 5-6, a loss would automatically mean elimination for UE, who would see its preseason hype vanish into thin air if they drop their seventh game.

Ateneo, meanwhile, would need to beat the Warriors to strengthen its bid for a Final Four seat.

If they win, the Eagles move to 7-5 and tie idle University of Santo Tomas for fourth spot before both Ateneo and the Growling Tigers play one more game and then battle each other in the last elimination round game on September 18.

Long-time assistant coach Sandy Arrespacochaga takes over for Perasol, who was banned for a game by the UAAP for his involvement in the fracas after their loss to De La Salle University last Sunday.

Kiefer Ravena will lead the charge for the six-peat-seeking Eagles as Arrespacochaga looks for the swashbuckling junior to assert himself in the endgame and make important free-throws.

On the other hand, coach Boycie Zamar will look for more support for Roi Sumang and Charles Mammie, as two-guard Ralf Olivares will miss his second straight game due to a suspension.

The game will air live on Studio 23, BALLS HD 167 and with a same day replay at 6:30 p.m. on BALLS SkyCable channel 34/ Destiny Cable channel 36.