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Lion Claw! San Beda breaks Mapua’s streak

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With the hot-shooting Mapua Institute of Technology Cardinals breathing on their necks, the San Beda College Red Lions relied on their big game experienced over the rookie-laden Cardinals to survive, 75-65 to also play as streak-busters at the FilOil Flying V Arena, Friday afternoon.

After a brief moment of holding onto the lead in the early minutes, Mapua succumbed against San Beda’s suffocating defense underneath. The Red Lions did a good job denying Allwell Oraeme’s touches inside while their plan of attack was to run in transition and making the extra passes.

Veteran duo of Baser Amer and Art Dela Cruz anchored the running game for the Red Lions as they combined for three fastbreak attempts to give them an early 14-9 edge. Amer, who did not suit up against the Cardinals in their first round meeting, tallied seven early points in the first as a starter to give his team a 23-10 edge after the quarter.

Mapua was on a slump to begin the second quarter while the Red Lions fast attack for points was showcased. SBC had an 8-0 run in four minutes to extend their lead to 19. Josan Nimes snapped the cold streak for his squad with a floater and finding JP Nieles to finally put up some points for Mapua. The Cardinals installed a mini-rally late in the first half as they erased a 22-pt hole with a 10-3 counter including balanced scoring from their five on the floor.

The momentum carried by the Cardinals continued in the second half as they slowly chipped into the lead and make the game a closely-fought battle. However in the third, every mini-rally put up the Cardinals was answered by big shots from San Beda. Donald Tankoua scored six straight points late in the third for SBC but Shane Menina started to catch fire from downtown. The good exchange of baskets maintained San Beda’s 10pt lead after three quarters.

Suddenly, Mapua was knocking on the door as they opened the fourth with an 8-0 run within 90 seconds as Menina inked in two more from three-point territory. Nimes also asserted himself as a floater made it a 61-60 game for SBC with five mins left in the match. Afterwards, Baser Amer, Art Dela Cruz and Ola Adeogun anchored the composure down the stretch as they were able to punch in the game-sealing field goals and rally-extinguishing baskets to break Mapua’s six-game winning run. The Red Lions limited the Cardinals to quiet five points while Oraeme missed a critical fastbreak layup with 47.1 remaining and failed to catch a pass from the inbounds at the successive possession.

“Well, it’s a big win. It’s a big game because we get an advantage right now. It’s the home stretch,” a relieved Jamike Jarin said in the postgame scrum. “It really, really counts. For today lang, iba yung pangyayari. We were ahead and they came fighting back. It shows how good a team they really are. They were shooting right in front of us and it was going in. It’s a testament to the confidence their coaches are giving them and the excellent shooting they teach them.”

“This should be a character game. We will see what type of young men we have,” he added.

Top MVP candidate Art dela Cruz led all scorers with 17 points. The senior also grabbed 10 boards and was able to dish out 5 dimes. “Well, wala na ko masasabi sa kanya. Just keep on improving,” Jarin said about his senior Dela Cruz.

Four other Red Lions scored in double-figures with Smart Elite ambassador Baser Amer scoring 15 points and grabbing 9 rebounds.

For the Cardinals, both Allwell Oraeme and Darell Menina scored 15 points apiece. The league-leader in rebounds grabbed 21 boards as well and was able to swat 2 San Beda attempts. Menina, on the other hand, was hot from down town in shooting 5/7 from rainbow country.

The Red Lions (12-4) will next face the Arellano Chiefs, 4pm on Oct. 1 while Mapua’s (10-6) next assignment will be up against the EAC Generals, 2pm the next day.

The Scores:

SBC (75) – Dela Cruz 17, Amer 15, Tankoua 12, Tongco 12,Koga 10, Adeogun 7, Mocon 2, Cabanag 0, Soberano 0, Reyes 0, Bonsubre 0, Presbitero 0

MIT (65) – Oraeme 15, Menina 15, Nieles 10, Nimes 9, Brana 6, Serrano 4, Isit 2, Aguirre 2, Raflores 2, Biteng 0

Quarters: 23-12, 41-26, 58-48, 75-65

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Basketball

After getting first D-League experience, Zark’s-Lyceum ready to get loose

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After a hesitant performance in their PBA D-League debut last Thursday that resulted in a loss to the Marinerong Pilipino Skippers, the Zark’s Burger-Lyceum Jawbreakers seemingly caught up with the league’s style of play on Tuesday.

Zark’s-Lyceum displayed their true form and stamped their class all over the Batangas-EAC Generals with a 37-point destruction, 112-75 — so far the biggest winning margin the franchise has ever had in its D-League history.

“Medyo adjusted na kami on everything — the calls and the teams we’re playing against with,” said Zark’s-Lyceum head coach Topex Robinson after the match at Pasig Sports Center. “But the things we want to mind are those things we control.

“We just have to keep on doing what we are doing. It’s more on replenishing na lang on our old ways.”

Robinson’s claim was strongly backed up by the numbers that the Jawbreakers produced.

CJ Perez had 21 points and 10 rebounds. MJ Ayaay produced 15 points and 10 boards, and Mike Nzeusseu delivered 14 markers and 11 boards.

Even the bench made their presence felt in the victory. With guard Jaycee Marcelino spearheading the supporting cast’s charge with 12 markers, the bench contributed a remarkable 56 points to their total output.

Photo by PBA Images

“Ano lang, cinontrol lang namin yung pace kasi yun naman talaga yung laro namin, yung mabilisan,” said the 24-year-old do-it-all forward, who also collected three steals.

“Kailangan talaga mabilisan para ma-execute namin yung mga ginagawa namin.”

This week will be a rough one for the Pirates, as they will play right away this Thursday against the AMA Online Education. And for Perez, he strongly believes that they will be able to carry over their momentum.

“Oo. Nandun pa. Energy talaga yung puhunan namin para makalaro ng maayos.”

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Basketball

Bonbon Batiller shows what he can bring to Letran in D-League debut

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Photo by PBA Images

Tuesday proved to be a double debut for Bonbon Batiller. Aside from beginning his first foray in the PBA D-League, it also marked his debut for the Letran Knights, who are carrying the Wang’s Basketball Couriers franchise.

And the 5-foot-11 guard showed what he can bring to the table. Batiller collected 15 points, five rebounds, and three assists to help the Knights raise the curtains of their campaign with a 93-75 rout of the Batangas-EAC Generals.

“Nagworkout yung pinagpraktisan namin,” said Batiller. “Nagbunga rin yung tinuro samin ni Coach Jeff (Napa) lalo sa depensa. Tsaka siguro sa rebounds — laking lamang namin sa rebound. Nagsipag mga bigs namin.”

But what has him even more satisfied is the warm reception and trust he’s had from the Knights, even if he has spent barely a year with them after transferring from University of the East last 2017.

“Masaya po kasi tinanggap nila ako sa Letran ng buong-buo,” said Batiller, who normed 10.5 points, 3.7 rebounds, 2.5 assists, and 1.6 steals with UE in two years. “Tsaka yung tiwala nila na makakatulong ako sa team nandoon.

“Kaya masaya ako sa pinakita nila sa akin.”

That is why the General Santos native is hard-pressed to prove himself to Letran, saying that he’s all about giving back to the school that gave him another opportunity to resume his young, up-and-coming basketball career.

“Kailangan kong may mapatunayan na deserving ako sa binigay na second chance sa akin ni Letran,” said Batiller, who decided to switch schools partly due to academic reasons.

“Malaki ang utang ko sa Letran.”

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Football

Bienvenido Maranon scores brace as Ceres-Negros eliminates Brisbane Roar

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Photo from the-AFC.com

Philippine club football just achieved its biggest continental result yet

The inaugural Philippines Football League champions Ceres-Negros Football Club eliminated three-time Australian champions Brisbane Roar in the 2018 AFC Champions League’s second preliminary round with a 3-2 stunner, away at the QSAC Stadium in Brisbane.

With the win, the 2017 AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal Champions are set to face Chinese Super League club Tianjin Quanjian next January 30, 2018 at the Haihe Educational Football Stadium in Tianjin, China, to book a seat in the group stages.

Brisbane were the favorites for this tie and it showed, as Ceres started the contest on the back foot. Italian striker Massimo Maccarone handed the home side the lead in the 35th minute when he turned in Brett Holman’s pass.

Maccarone’s goal could have lowered the Busmen’s moral, but Risto Vidakovic’s men took it as a motivation rather than a downer. In fact, Ceres replied in the best way possible when Bienvenido Maranon scored his first goal of the match two minutes from halftime, thanks to a scramble in the Brisbane box.

By all accounts, Ceres had already made Philippine football proud at halftime. By this stage last year, Brisbane had accrued a 4-0 halftime cushion against Global Cebu en route to a 6-0 rout.

Today, though, Brisbane faced tougher resistance at Ceres’ hands. That resistance turned into a full-fledged revolt in the 65th minute when Maranon directed the ball past a helpless Jamie Young to give the Busmen their first taste of the lead.

Maranon’s goal well and truly turned the tide in Ceres’ favor. Brisbane were stunned. The home side are the defending A-League champions, but are currently eighth in the table this season and would soon face elimination from Asia’s premier club competition.

Already up 2-1, the Busmen finally achieved some breathing room in the 75th minute when Omid Nazari scored from close range to give Ceres a two-goal cushion over Brisbane.

Nazari’s goal not only sealed the win for Ceres, it also propelled Philippine football into the big leagues. Not even a late goal from French midfielder Éric Bauthéac could prevent the Busmen’s victory.

After five minutes of stoppage time, Ceres emerged 3-2 winners against Brisbane Roar. Come what may against Tianjin seven days from now, the Busmen have already achieved Philippine football’s biggest result since their own achievement in last season’s AFC Cup.

Who knows? Maybe Ceres can pull off another upset?

Ceres-Negros XI: Doblas (GK), Super, Mike Ott, Ingreso, Maranon, Porteria, Schrock, De Murga (C), Munoz, Nazari, Christaens.

Brisbane Roar XI: Ingham, Bowles, Papadopoulos, Maccarone, Holman, Khalfallah, Oxborrow, McKay (C), Hingert, Young (GK), Franjic.

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EAC

CJ Perez, Zark’s-Lyceum vent ire on Batangas-EAC with 37-point romp

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Photo by PBA Images

CJ Perez and the Zark’s Burger-Lyceum Jawbreakers finally lived up to their hype, as they clobbered the Batangas-EAC Generals to score a 37-point beatdown, 112-75 for their first win, Tuesday at the Pasig Sports Center.

It was an all-out attack from the Jawbreakers, as they beat the Generals to the bite and took control of the game early, with Mike Nzeusseu and Jaycee Marcelino guiding their side to the 48-33 lead at halftime which they would never surrender.

Perez paced Zark’s Burger-Lyceum with 21 points and 10 rebounds, while MJ Ayaay tallied a double-double with his 15 markers, 10 boards, and three assists.

Cameroonian student-athlete Nzeusseu also delivered 14 points, 11 rebounds, and two assists. Marcelino had eight first half points and wound up with 12 off the bench, as the reserves chipped in 56 huge points in the tussle.

Coach Topex Robinson lauded the Jawbreakers for quickly adjusting to the style of the PBA D-League just days after falling to the Marinerong Pilipino, 92-94, back in opening day.

“Medyo adjusted na kami on everything — the calls and the teams were playing against with. But the things we want to mind are those things we control. We just have to keep on doing what we are doing. It’s more on replenishing na lang on our old ways,” he said.

Earvin Mendoza and Cedric de Joya both had 16 points for the Generals in the losing effort.

Zark’s-Lyceum look to continue to roll when they face the AMA Online Education Titans on Thursday, January 25. EAC-Batangas, on the other hand, take on the Gamboa-St. Clare Coffee Lovers on Monday, January 29.

The Scores:

Zark’s-Lyceum 112 — Perez 21, Ayaay 15, Nzeusseu 14, Jc. Marcelino 12, Serrano 10, Baltazar 8, Santos 8, Jv. Marcelino 6, Tansingco 6, Marata 4, Liwag 4, Ibañez 2, Cinco 2, Pretta 0.

Batangas-EAC 75 — E. Mendoza 16, De Joya 16, Tampoc 12, Laude 9, Pate 8, Maguliano 6, Altamirano 5, Diego 3, Garcia 0, Dela Peña 0, Martin 0, J. Mendoza 0, Neri 0.

Quarterscores: 19-14, 48-33, 84-47, 112-75.

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