MANILA - Defending champion Ateneo and Nazareth School of National University took down their respective foes in the UAAP Season 82 juniors baseball tournament, Saturday at the Rizal Memorial Baseball Stadium.
The two squads remain unbeaten heading into their Finals rematch.
The batters of Ateneo heated up in the sixth inning to romp past De La Salle-Zobel, 7-1.
Zach Pena popped a huge double that brought in two runs that sparked a four-run inning. It did not help that the Junior Green Batters had three errors in the inning that led to two more runs.
Pitcher Zachary Urbina was also steady on the mound, pitching a complete game that saw him fan nine batters. He allowed six hits.
"Mas maganda na manalo kami para petiks na kami sa next round. Tatlong lang kasi pitcher namin para puwede na sila mag-relax sa second round," said Ateneo assistant coach Pepe Jose.
Early in the day, National University sent a message to the Blue Eaglets, pounding University of Santo Tomas in a five-inning bloodbath, 15-3.
The Bullpups had 11 runs in the fourth inning that saw NU's rotation complete a cycle. Gio Gorpido, Kyle Ilagan, Nico Calanday, and Herald Lenorio pounced on UST pitchers John Regalado and Mark Gaspi during the game-breaking rally.
Regie Omana had three RBIs in the game while Lenorio and Gorpido had two.
"Very happy. It's kind of morale-boosting for us kasi we are facing the defending champions. Sila yung tumalo sa amin last year and we have been waiting to redeem ourselves from it," said NU head coach Egay delos Reyes.
"Remember last time, na-sweep namin sila nung elimination round pero na-sweep nila kami nung championship. Masakit pa rin sa amin yun. Yun yung preparation namin buong off-season, to get back at them," he added.
Jerico Quilantang only pitched 2 1/3 innings in the game, allowing just one hit while striking out two Junior Golden Sox players.
Both Adamson and De La Salle-Zobel fell to 0-2.
For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.