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CEU shoots the lights out in huge win over DLSU



The Centro Escolar University (CEU) Scorpions, led by JK Casino’s five three pointers in the fourth quarter, withstood a slow start and eventually take a 93-78 win over the De La Salle University (DLSU) Green Archers early Saturday evening at the FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan City.

CEU big man Samboy de Leon was quickly called for two fouls in the first minute of the game. After a foul on a steal attempt on Jeron Teng, De Leon was assessed a technical foul after continuous complaining. This sparked a huge 10-0 rally highlighted by three straight three pointers by Jason Perkins. Aaron Jureta placed on the board and scored CEU’s eight of their first 10 points. However, Thomas Torres and Prince Rivero quelled any Scorpion rally to give DLSU a 23-16 lead. Moreover, Samboy de Leon was penalized with his third foul with 38.5 seconds remaining.

Abu Tratter extended the DLSU lead to start the second stanza 28-18. The gutsy Scorpions squad then went toe-to-toe with the offensive firepower of the Green Archers to close the gap. Even a third foul penalized on CEU senior Joseph Celso did not stop the momentum of CEU as JM Vargas connected with back-to-back triples. CEU then closed the quarter with a 6-0 run, majority of which coming from foreign student-athlete Rodrigue Embondo.

After halftime, a reinvigorated CEU squad came out of the locker room and locked down the potent DLSU offense. In addition, the CEU Scorpions, known to be a three-point shooting team, displayed amazing ball movement to look for open three-point shots. After being down 44-38, the Scorpions went on a game-altering 20-7 run. Three pointers by Samboy de Leon and Mon Abundo and big shots by Jeruta gave CEU a 56-51 lead. Torres tried to stop the rally, but de Leon extended the CEU lead to 65-57 to end the third canto of the game.

The combination of Abondo and Casino then opened the floodgates that blew the game wide open. CEU’s floor general Abondo was able to locate backcourt mate CK Casino for open looks from downtown in three straight possessions to give the NAASCU champions a 74-59 lead. Perkins, who was in foul trouble the entire game, tried to rally the Green Archers back in scoring five straight points but a backbreaking three pointer by Casino, his fifth of the quarter, destroyed all hopes of a comeback with an 82-69 lead with 3:26 remaining. The game ended with the Scorpions beating the Green Archers for the first time in school history 91-76.

Coach Edgar Macaraya said this win is a dedication to everyone understanding the concept of a “CEU family.” “Everybody stepped up. It showed that the team does not revolve around Samboy. [Joseph] Celso, JM [Vargas] all took turns in defending Jeron,” the NAASCU champion coach said about the team’s defense.

But the man of the hour was JK Casino. When asked about the hot shooting performance of his prized guard, Macaraya said that Casino was not having a good showing in the tournament, “thank god that JK finally had a good shooting [game]. And thankfully it came against La Salle.”

After shooting just 36% in the first half, CEU shot 52.5% in the second half. Moreover, great ball movement by the Scorpions assisted on 13 of the 21 second half shots of the team. Three point shooting, though, was the story of the game as CEU connected on 12 three pointers in the game.

The CEU Scorpions were led by Jureta’s 19 points and Casino’s 17 points, including five three pointers. Ebondo had a double-double scoring 15 points and grabbing 17 rebounds. Mon Abundo also dished out 10 assists.

For the Green side, Jason Perkins led the team with 19 points but fouled out in the fourth quarter. Prince Rivero and Jeron Teng led the team in rebounds with eight each.

The CEU Scorpions will next play on Saturday, June 8 in a rematch of last year’s third place game against the SWU Cobras at 1:30pm. DLSU, on the other hand, will look to bounce back against UST at 5:00pm on the same day.

The Scores:

CEU (93) – Jeruta 19, Casino 17, Ebondo 15, De Leon R. 13, Batino 8, Abundo 7, Vargas 6, Celso 4, Anunciacion 2, Pakatipunan 2, Opiso 0, De Leon K 0

DLSU (78) – Perkins 19, Rivero 12, Tratter 11, Torres 8, Teng 8, Gob 6, Caracut 5, Go 4, Van Opstal 3, Navarro 2

CEU (B, 6-1)16366593
DLSU (B, 5-2)23375778


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