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Sinag teammates Thompson, Jalalon to collide in pivotal matchup

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Basketball fans have marked August 6, 2015 as a pivotal day in the 91st Season of the National Collegiate Athletics Association.

Four of the leagues’ Final Four contenders from last season are pitted against each other on this day as the defending champions San Beda College Red Lions (5-1) face the Jose Rizal University Heavy Bombers (4-2) during the day’s opening game. In the 4:00pm game though, two heavyweight teams clash as the Arellano University Chiefs and the University of Perpetual Help System DALTA Altas look to bounce back from devastating losses received from the Colegio de San Juan de Letran Knights (7-0) and the San Beda Red Lions respectively.

The main game of the day features a marquee match-up between NCAA Season 90 Most Valuable Player Earl Scottie Thompson and fourth-year guard Jio Jalalon. Known to be close friends due to their stint with the National Team, the two skippers will face-off in a game that will help boost their teams’ bid for a Final Four ticket.

NCAA 91 SBC vs. UPHSD-Adeogun, ThompsonThe Perpetual Altas started-off hot in the season with a 4-0 slate. The team dominated all their opponents during that streak until they faced the Letran juggernaut. Team captain Scottie Thompson led the team in scoring with 22 points, grabbed nine rebounds, and dished out six assists. However, Thompson committed a team-high seven turnovers in the game. In a tough stretch of games, the Altas next faced the Red Lions and went toe-to-toe with the champions but a costly turnover by Thompson paved the way for a Red Lion win. The Altas’ captain scored just ten points and was just 5/13 shooting from the charity stripe. Moreover, Thompson faced a lot off double teams throughout the game that limited his shot attempts and his vision for passing.

NCAA 91 CSJL vs. AU- JalalonOn the other end, the Arellano University Chiefs went on a rampage after dropping their first game against the Jose Rizal University Heavy Bombers. Led by their court general Jio Jalalon, the Chiefs cruised to a four game winning streak before facing the Letran Knights. Jalalon faced constant double teams that disrupted the play set by the Jerry Condinera-mentored squad. Jalalon finished with just ten points and five assists in a loss that halted the team’s streak.

Tomorrow, the two Smart Elite ambassadors will face-off for the first time since sharing the hardcourt in Kailang, Singapore. The two contenders for this year’s Most Valuable Player crown are more than ready for this pivotal game.

For Thompson, the only guard in the top ten in rebounding and second behind Jalalon in assists, the task of facing last year’s runners-up is one of the toughest challenges they face this season. “Para sakin naman isa sila pinakamahirap na kalaban this season,” he told Tiebreaker Times. But for him, he is more than ready especially with the seven day-break that he used to heal his body. “Malaking tulong yung break kasi may mga two-games sa isang linggo kami nun.”

Jalalon, on the other hand, knows that they need to stop the Altas’ floor general right from the get go in order for them to win. “Siguro una kailangan namin ma-stop si Scott kasi siya lang yung nagpapagana ng team niya,” he said. However, he further added that Gab Dagangon should also be checked at all times. “Yung Gab naman kailangan din namin depensahan kasi may shooting. Mahirap na pag na-stop namin si Scott tapos si Gab at yung [foreign student-athlete] nilang dalawa mataas yung score lalo kaming mahihirapan.”

The Altas’ fifth year guard told Tiebreaker Times that there is no rivalry between the two. They are just two players giving their all for the ultimate goal of a championship. “Kami naman ni Jio laro lang kami para sa team. Nothing’s personal naman. Pareho kaming dalawa, gustong manalo. So gagawin namin ang lahat para sa team.”

With all the fanfare involved in their match-up, both Jalalon and Thompson know the importance of a win for their respective teams. “Sobrang kailangan namin manalo,” Thompson said with emphasis. “Kasi dalawang sunod na kaming talo so must-win situation kami sa mga natitira pa naming mga games.” For the Cagayan De Oro native though, he thinks that his team should not think about their recent loss too much for them to win their game tomorrow. “Kailangan lang namin gawin yung mga ginawa namin nung four straight [wins] namin. Defense ang magpapanalo sa amin,” he closed.

Scottie Thompson and the Perpetual Altas will face Jio Jalalon and the Arellano Chiefs tomorrow at 4:00pm with the victor gaining solo third in the standings.

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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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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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