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Aldin Ayo (L) and Jamike Jarin (R) (MB photo | Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

Aldin Ayo (L) and Jamike Jarin (R) (MB photo | Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

By Jerome Lagunzad

Games Today (Smart-Araneta Coliseum)
2 p.m. — La Salle vs NU
4 p.m. — Adamson vs UST

Old rivals Aldin Ayo of La Salle and Jamike Jarin of National University are downplaying their coaching showdown today as competitions in the UAAP heat up at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

“Am I excited? Hindi naman. It’s just a regular game,” said Ayo when asked about rekindling his NCAA rivalry with Jarin.

Ayo and Jarin had squared off when they were still in the NCAA, with Ayo’s Letran Knights beating Jarin’s San Beda Red Lions two years ago.

Jarin, likewise, shrugged off references to their storied NCAA days.

“We just need to ready ourselves for DLSU,” said Jarin, who nonetheless seemed bothered when reminded that the Green Archers are going to be tougher as the tournament progresses with the arrival of Cameroonian Ben Mbala after making heads turn in the AfroBasket.

“Of course, they’re the defending champions. They’re a force to be reckoned with and probably the best collegiate team right now,” added Jarin.

Game is set at 2 p.m., with the Green Archers eager to pick up from where they left off following a 95-90 victory over Far Eastern University, and the Bulldogs raring to do the same after scoring an 86-69 win over University of the East over the weekend.

Clashing at 4 p.m. are Adamson and University of Santo Tomas, both determined to get their respective title bids going.

The Soaring Falcons, humbled by the fast-starting Ateneo Blue Eagles, 85-65, the last time out, get a much needed shot in the arm with the return of solid Cameroon import Papi Sarr who has recovered from a groin injury.

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