The De La Salle Green Archers held off a late rally by defending champion NU Bulldogs to come away with a 67-63 victory in UAAP Season 78 action Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena.
La Salle star Jeron Teng scored 18 points while also getting ample help from teammates Andrei Caracut and Jason Perkins who both made 13 markers apiece.
Perkins also grabbed 12 boards while Paolo Rivero added 11 markers as the Green Archers denied the reigning titlists a victory in their campaign opener.
La Salle limited the Bulldogs to just six points in the first period, 16-6. The Green Archers widened the gap to as much as 15, 45-30, in the third period before NU mounted a fightback.
After being down by just eight, 59-51, with 3:11 remaining, NU got steals and forced consecutive turnovers against La Salle. The Bulldogs had an 8-1 run ignited by a Gelo Alolino triple to come within one, 60-59.
But Perkins made two free throws, then Teng drove for a basket to ice the La Salle win.
Alolino finished with 16 points and six rebounds in the losing effort for NU.