National University stamped its class in opening day action of UAAP Season 75, thrashing University of the East, 90-55, Saturday at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.
Forward Jeoffrey Javillonar exploded for 19 points and 11 rebounds while reigning Most Valuable Player Bobby Ray Parks Jr. added 16 points, six rebounds, and six assists to help the Bulldogs win the first game of the season.
“We played very well collectively,” NU coach Eric Altamirano said. “It’s the opening day, lots of excitement, new arena. (But) it’s just any other game.”
Parks, who often carried the scoring load for the Bulldogs last season, lauded his teammates for providing him the much-needed support.
“Everybody can score. All I have to do is to be the leader of the team,” he said.
Guard Joshua Alolino also fired 12 points, while Spencer Rosario added 10 points. Big man Henri Betayene also delivered in the absence of Emmanuel Mbe, who was forced to sit out the first half because the front of his jersey did not have a number.
UE threatened early in the game, taking advantage of Parks’ struggles on offense to grab a 15-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.
But the Bulldogs broke loose in the second quarter, with Parks and Javillonar making the Red Warriors pay for their zone defense by unleashing a 25-4 run courtesy of a barrage of three-pointers to pull away with a 48-23 lead at the half.
NU continued its onslaught in the second half, as Mbe returned in the third quarter. With him anchoring the defense in the paint, the Bulldogs pounced on the smaller UE, as NU increased its lead to as much as 40 points, 88-48, late in the game.
Guard Roi Sumang led UE with 21 points and five rebounds.