The Centro Escolar University Scorpions once again leaned on their veteran core to escape with a 100-85 conquest over the AMA Online Education Titans, Thursday night at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Congolese center Rod Ebondo was magnificent for the Scorpions anew, finishing 27 points, none bigger than his game-clinching trey with 1:00 to play, on top of 22 rebounds, three blocks, two assists, and two steals to help his side grab their third straight victory.
JK Casiño contributed 22 markers, while Christian Uri and Mark Cruz both tallied 14 points and six boards each for CEU (3-2).
The Scorpions used a 30-point charge in the second period to pull away and erect a lead as high as 20, 69-49, with 3:40 remaining in the third quarter.
Mario Bonleon and Renzo Subido, though, had other things in mind as the pair helped AMA crawl their way back and trim the lead to just eight, 95-83, thanks to an and-one play from Ivan Villanueva at the 2:41 mark of the fourth quarter.
That would prove to be their last hurrah, though, as Aaron Jeruta, Ebondo, and Mark Cruz came to the defense of CEU, stringing together three straight baskets to put the nail in the coffin for their side.
“Ang dami pa naming lapses na kailangan naming i-correct, so we have to continue pushing ourselves in practice, lalo na yung decision making,” said Scorpions coach Yong Garcia.
Bonleon shot 12-of-22 from the field to pace AMA (0-5) with 30 points and four rebounds, while Subido had 23.
Centro Escolar looks to make it four in a row when they face the veteran-laden Marinerong Pilipino on Tuesday, July 4, at 5:00pm. AMA, on the other hand, hope to snap out of their skid when they face the Gamboa Coffee Lovers on the same day at 3:00pm.
CEU (100) – Ebondo 27, Casiño 22, Uri 14, Cruz 14, Arim 8, Manlangit 7, Jeruta 6, Wamar 2, Aquino 0, Saber 0.
AMA Online Education (85) – Bonleon 30, Subido 23, Salonga 10, Villanueva 7, Alas 5, Alupani 3, Flores 3, Paras 2, Celso 2, Macaranas 0, Jordan 0, Malones 0.
Quarterscores: 21-19, 51-37, 74-63, 100-85.