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Balanced-scoring powers La Salle over Adamson



Succumbing their past two games against UP and FEU, the De La Salle University Green Archers bounced back and got back to a winning track with an 88-71 dismantling over the skidding Adamson University Soaring Falcons at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Sunday afternoon.

Despite a slow start and having only a point in the first 3 ½ minutes of action, La Salle built a 13-0 run in the first quarter powered by two triples by rookie Joshua Torralba. The Archers swarming defense made Adamson’s bigs bleed for touches underneath while their shooters could not find the mark that enabled the Taft-based crew to build an early cushion. First year Renzo Navarro also scored a triple late as his team was up by fourteen at the end of one quarter.

Turnovers started to pile up for the young Adamson team as La Salle kept running in transition. Balanced attack from the DLSU five on the floor maintained its distance against the Falcons with Jeron Teng and the rest of the Archers draining jumpers against AdU’s 2-3 zone defense. Adamson built a mini-rally with Nalos and Fernandez making layups, but too much scoring from La Salle’s depth gave them a 47-26 lead at the break.

At the half, coach Juno Sauler already fielded in 10 players from his roster and all scored at least two points. In addition, first year player Larry Muyang played a solid debut as the starting center as he corralled early boards while the team was up by 15 from three-point shooting.

Papi Sarr led another 4-0 start to the new half by the Falcons but the short spurt was quickly extinguished by three 3-pointers by DLSU. Thomas Torres starting to catch fire while Torralba hit another one within two minutes to erect a 56-30 lead. The Falcons slowly crawled back as JD Tungcab pioneered their run as he inked his team’s first triple of the match. La Salle had a contrasting third period as they slowed down in the last minutes scoring-wise. The Falcons took advantage by outscoring the Taft-based crew 9-2 in the stretch to jumpstart their run.

Two turnovers by DLSU to open up the last period opened the comeback hopes of Adamson with Harold Ng knocking down a three pointer. However, Teng made a big and-one play to stop the Falcons’ run while Adamson head coach Mike Fermin got ejected to the match due to two technical free throws at the 6:46 mark. Torres then added three more points from the foul stripe then top off his season-high with a corner three to reinstall a 72-54 lead. This pretty much sealed the deal as despite Adamson slicing the lead again down to 11, time was not on their side as La Salle also started to field their third-string players.

“We still have a lot of things to work on,” DLSU head coach Juno Sauler said after the game. Sauler cited crashing the boards and ball handling as the things they have to work on. “We gave up a lot of offensive rebounds, we turned the ball over a lot of times. “ Sauler also complimented the game of Thomas Torres. “Thomas played great on both ends. Aside from scoring he defended Joseph Nalos, their main guy.” Torres added that the game today saw what the team had been doing in their practices. “We had a week to prepare for this game. Everyday our practice was filled with intensity and energy. We just brought it to this game,” Torres closed.

The Taft cagers were led by Jeron Teng’s 16 points and 9 boards. Teng was excellent from the field in shooting 8/15 but was a horrid 33% from the foul line. Thomas Torres had his best outing of the season with 16 markers. He also dished out five dimes. Smart Elite ambassador Prince Rivero played just 15 minutes in the game and had two points and grabbed six boards.

On the other hand, foreign student-athlete Pape Sarr led Adamson with a double-double with 18 points and 16 boards. Joseph Nalos, however, had a bad outing in scoring just 10 points and was just 3/12 from the field. Smart Elite ambassador Dawn Ochea added 9 points and 4 boards in the loss.

As a team, La Salle was outrebounded 50-48. Moreover, Adamson had 23 offensive rebounds in the game. However, the San Marcelino cagers shot poorly at 29.76% compared to La Salle’s 46.67 shooting clip.

This is also La Salle’s seventh straight win over Adamson in the UAAP as they improve to a 2-2 slate and will next face the UE Red Warriors on Sept 27, 2pm at the Mall of Asia Arena. On the other hand, AdU is still winless in four games now and will be seeking its first win against NU, 4pm at MoA Arena.

The Scores:
DLSU (88) – Teng 18, Torres 16, Sargent 11, Caracut 9, Torralba 9, Perkins 7, Muyang 6, Tratter 6, Navarro 3, Rivero 2, Gob 1, Pascual 0.
Adu (71) – Sarr 18, Nalos 10, Ng 10, Ochea 9, Polican 8, Tungcab 6, Camacho 5, Margallo 2, Fernandez 2, Miranda 1, Bernardo 0, Capote 0, Villanueva 0.
Quarterscores: 24-10, 47-26, 63-47, 88-71.

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SJ Belangel makes leap to top 3 of Chooks-to-Go/NBTC 24




Ateneo Blue Eaglets towering teen Kai Sotto and La Salle Greenhills Junior Blazers court general Joel Cagulangan remained as the top two high school players in the Chooks-to-Go/National Basketball Training Center 24, but there was a lot of movement this week, including the rise of SJ Belangel.

Belangel, Ateneo’s graduating floor leader had a sensational week, helping steer the Blue Eaglets to an unblemished 10-0 record. With his exploits, he was the consensus third-ranked player of the week, leapfrogging Mapua High School’s and NCAA MVP Will Gozum.

FEU-Diliman do-it-all guard L-Jay Gonzales and Katipunan swingman Dave Ildefonso also moved up the ladder while UST Tiger Cub ace CJ Cansino dropped to eighth after finishing fourth last week.

Besides movement at the top, there were also a lot of debutatants in this week’s list.

Blue Eaglets double-double machine Joaqui Manuel’s workhorse type of game paid off as he was ranked 21st this week.

After firing 51 markers last weekend, Bacolod Tay Tung High School’s Harold Alarcon was named as the 22nd top prospect.

Joshua Yerro of University of Visayas then rounded out the list.

Here is the complete Chooks-to-Go/NBTC 24 Week 2:

1. Kai Sotto, center, Ateneo (1)
2. Joel Cagulangan, guard, La Salle (2)
3. SJ Belangel, guard, Ateneo (5)
4. Will Gozum, center, Mapua (3)
5. L-Jay Gonzales, guard, FEU-Diliman (6)
6. Dave Ildefonso, forward, Ateneo (8)
7. Rhayyan Amsali, forward, NU (7)
8. CJ Cansino, forward, UST (4)
9. Clint Escamis, guard, Mapua (10)
10. Aaron Fermin, center, Arellano (9)
11. Terrence Fortea, guard, NU (16)
12. RJ Abarrientos, guard, FEU-Diliman (15)
13. Inand Fornilos, forward, La Salle (11)
14. Evan Nelle, guard, San Beda (12)
15. Warren Bonifacio, center, Mapua (13)
16. John Galinato, guard, Chiang Kai Shek (14)
17. Mac Guadaña, guard, Lyceum (18)
18. Raven Cortez, center, La Salle Zobel (19)
19. Harvey Pagsanjan, guard, Hope Christian (20)
20. Maui Cruz, guard, EAC (23)
21. Joaqui Manuel, forward, Ateneo (N/A)
22. Harold Alarcon, guard, Tay Tung-Bacolod (N/A)
23. Jancork Cabahug, forward, UV (17)
24. Joshua Yerro, guard, UV (N/A)

On Tuesday, January 23, the second episode of Chooks-to-Go/NBTC 24 will air live at 7:00pm. Tonight’s special guest will be former Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas player and NBTC alumnus Jeron Teng.

The Chooks-to-Go/National Basketball Training Centre 24 is the first-ever attempt to rank the top high school prospects in the country today.

The weekly ranking used the following criteria: league stats, impact in team, team record, leadership, defense, offense, and level of competition.

These rankings will be used to determine the 24 players who will take part in the annual SM-NBTC High School All-Star Game on March at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

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Joyce Sta. Rita slams 28 as Lady Stags avert Cardinal upset



Erasing a disappointing third set, the San Sebastian College-Recoletos Lady Stags upended the upset-conscious Mapua University Lady Cardinals, 25-20, 25-7, 29-31, 25-14, Tuesday afternoon at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

The win revived the Lady Stags’ campaign after back-to-back losses to Jose Rizal University and University of Perpetual Help System DALTA. San Sebastian is now at 3-2.

“Andun pa rin naman, apat pa naman laro,” said Stags’ head coach Roger Gorayeb on their chances for the Final Four. “Sana umabot.”

Team captain Joyce Sta. Rita produced a career-high 28 points off 22 attacks, four blocks, and two serves. The senior middle hitter paced her squad’s 58 spikes, which outscored that of Mapua’s 33.

The Lady Cards capitalized on the rotation wherein Sta. Rita was in the backline in that third set turnaround. Nonetheless, Vira Guillema and the rest of the Lady Stags just turned to their experience to ultimately finish the match.

Gorayeb, nonetheless, hopes his team will toughen up mentally for the home stretch of the eliminations. “Kasi ‘yung laro, nawawala na ‘yan sa physical side, napupunta na sa psychological part ng game.”

San Sebastian will take on Colegio de San Juan de Letran (2-3) on Thursday.

Angelie Magundayao lead the Cardinals with 10 markers.

Mapua (0-5) will take on Emilio Aguinaldo College (0-5) in a battle of winless earlier that day.

The Scores:

SSC-R 3 – Sta. Rita 28, Dalisay 17, Santos 11, Encarnacion 10, Guillema 4, Tiangco 2, Eroa L.

MU 1 – Mangundayao 10, Racelis 9, Pena 9, Latayan 5, Morano 4, Frando 2, Mercado 1, Barias 0, Hermano 0, Ramilo L.

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Cardinals blast Golden Stags for third win



After absorbing a sorry defeat from the San Beda College Red Spikers in their last outing, the Mapua University Cardinals subdued the San Sebastian College-Recolletos Golden Stags, 26-24, 25-16, 26-24, to take their third victory of the season, Tuesday morning at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

Mark Jason Egan paced the Intramuros-based squad with 14 points on eight attacks and three each of blocks and serves. Team captain Anjo Pertierra finished with 13 markers, while Alfred Pagulong had 10.

Despite a miserable reception output, Cardinals setter Raven Evangelista still had a field day as he produced 32 excellent sets on the 41 attack points of his squad.

Such would not go unnoticed as Pertierra lauded his playmaker’s production that led to the win. He said, “Sobrang ganda kung performance ni Raven. Nakapag-adjust siya sa bad reception. Kino-commend ko siya today.”

Losing that second set big, the Stags threatened to steal the third as they led 21-18 off back-to-back hits from James Eugenio and even forced a deuce. Nonetheless, a quick attack from Pertierra and an ace off Pagulong sealed the win for the Cards.

Pertierra admitted their lack of intensity almost cost them the first and third sets, and hopes the team address it as soon as the next game against the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals.

“Kilala naman EAC na maganda floor defense, sobrang makapit. Sasabayan namin sila, we’ll give our best,” he shared.

That important tussle between the Cards (3-2) and the Generals (2-3) will happen on Thursday.

Former skipper Jahir Ebrahim led the Stags with 16 markers.

San Sebastian (1-4) will try to get back on winning track when they face winless Letran (0-5) later that day.

The Scores:

MU 3 – Egan 14, Pertierra 13, Pagulong 10, Damian 8, Navera 8, Evangelista 1, Bondoc L.

SSC-R 0 – Ebrahim 16, Lana 9, Eugenio 8, Ronato 6, Ongque A 3, Campuspos 1, Eusebio 1, Lazaro 0, Toledo 0, Ongque AC L, Enano L.

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Kent Salado re-injures MCL, out for Go for Gold campaign



Photo by PBA Images

Kent Salado suffers a setback

The worst fear of the Go for Gold Scratchers came true Monday evening as all-around combo guard Kent Salado re-injured the medial cruciate ligament in his right knee.

The injury was confirmed by Kent Salado and the officials of Go for Gold and he will miss the entire 2018 PBA D-League Aspirants Cup.

With under three minutes left in the third quarter of Go for Gold’s opening game against the Gamboa-St. Clare Coffee Lovers Monday afternoon, the 5-foot-9 guard went for a drive but could not get the proper lift. He tried to walk it off but limped towards the audience section of the Pasig Sports Center.

“Parang may narinig nga siya na may tumunog daw,” shared Scratchers head coach Charles Tiu after their 75-68 win.

“We’re very worried.

“I think our PT said baka MCL ‘yun, so that might be a month or two, so that’s a big problem for us,” the youthful mentor added.

Salado finished the game with nine points, five rebounds, four assists, and three steals. He was immediately rushed to the Makati Medical Center afterwards. At around nine in the evening, the MRI showed that he tore his ACL as was initially reported by Tiebreaker Times. A second opinion, however, contradicted the initial diagnosis, showing only an MCL tear.

Prior to this, the native of Cagayan de Oro suffered a partial tear on medial collateral damage on the same knee last October 10, 2017 during Arellano’s 85-79 win over the San Sebastian Golden Stags.

With this setback, Salado was also advised to not play in the summer leagues to fully recover in time for the NCAA Season 94 Seniors Basketball tournament.

“Okay lang para NCAA na ko makapaglaro,” he said.

“Mas importante naman yun.”

The 23-year-old averaged 19.1 points, 5.0 assists, 3.8 rebounds, and 1.3 steals last season. He is eligible to enter the 2018 PBA Rookie Draft.

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