THE Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU) wasted no time in crushing University of Immaculate Conception (UIC), 97-48, to crown itself the Royal Mandaya Hotel 2010 Cup Inter-School Mini Basketball champion Saturday morning at the Davao City Recreation Center.

The Ateneo dribblers trailed 2-3 in the opening minutes but quickly recovered from the initial blow to build a commanding 31-20 lead and never looked back.

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Daryl Manliguez scored a game-high 28 points to lead the devastating Ateneo attack. He went on to win the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award.

Jethro Taculin added 18 points, including three conversions from the three-point land, and Francis Escandor had 8, mostly on plays inside the paint.

Jude Omaña led UIC with 21 points, but he failed to get scoring support from his teammates, who were caught helpless in the face of the searing Ateneo assault.

Cheered on by their parents, relatives and supporters, the Ateneo boys applied crippling defense in the championship showdown punctuated by a deadly counter-attack to put the game beyond recall early on.

In the battle for third place, Doña Pilar Learning Center beat Holy Child School of Davao, 63-49.

The victory was worth P15,000 for Ateneo while UIC received P10,000. Doña Pilar earned P5,000 and Holy Child took home P2,500.

Manliguez, aside from his MVP selection, was also named to the Mythical Five together with teammates Esbin Inliwan and Escandor, Doña Pilar's Sian Arriate and UIC's Omaña. They all received medals.

Baden Zafra, Royal Mandaya Hotel assistant general manager, awarded the cash prizes and trophies to the winners right after the finals match. He was assisted by tournament director Rico Biliran and tournament manager Macario "Bong" Gonzaga.

Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) regional director Regino "Boy" Cua, whose love for basketball is immeasurable, also graced the culmination of the highly-successful tournament organized by RMH's Glenn Escandor.

Zafra, in behalf of the RMH management, thanked all the participating teams for making the event successful. He also expressed his gratitude to the parents and members of the organizing committee. (CRAM)