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Tiebreaker Times


Filoil: Reyson fires 28 vs San Sebastian, gifts Bajar first win as Letran coach

Kurt Reyson came off the bench to score 28 points and shoot Colegio de San Juan de Letran to an 86-82 well-earned win against San Sebastian College-Recoletos, Thursday at Filoil EcoOil Center.

This is the Knights’ first win in the 2023 Filoil EcoOil Preseason Cup and, more importantly, their first breakthrough under new head coach Rensy Bajar who has a big void to fill in replacing three-peat NCAA champion coach Bonnie Tan.

“Unang-una, nagpapasalamat kami kay God na binigyan kami ng first win this preseason, at sa mga players na nag-cooperate sa gusto naming gawin. Pero malayo pa kami,” said Bajar, who dropped a razor-thin loss to San Beda in the PBA D-League last Tuesday.

The Golden Stags charged to a 16-8 start until Bajar inserted Reyson, who by then had just gotten to the venue after his finals. The 5-foot-10 playmaker proceeded to convert his first basket to beat the first quarter buzzer and then drilled a trey to start the second period to give the Knights a shot in the arm.

Letran was nursing a two-point lead inside the last two minutes before timely makes from Reyson quelled San Sebastian’s uprisings, wrapping up an efficient outing for him that saw him shoot 9-of-12 from the field and 8-of-10 from the line to go along with seven assists and three rebounds.

Pao Javillonar contributed a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double to the cause as well.

“I’m happy for his [Reyson] leadership, kaya lang, napupuwersa siya e. Siyempre, yung puso nito, gawa naman sa bakal, pero sana, mag-step up din yung iba naming players,” said Bajar.

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Rommel Calahat fronted the effort for the Golden Stags with 25 points, 13 rebounds, and two assists, while James Una chipped in 19 points, eight rebounds, two blocks two steals, and two assists, as they fell to 1-1.

University of the Philippines then stayed spotless after outclassing Centro Escolar University for a 91-75 victory.

Mark Belmonte topped the scoring column for the Fighting Maroons with 19 points in 19 minutes off the bench, while Gerry Abadiano chimed in 14 points and Francis Lopez and Harold Alarcon got 10 points apiece.

The Fighting Maroons flexed their depth, getting 52 points from their reserves, to help offset the absence of lead guard JD Cagulangan and an apparent right foot injury of Janjan Felicilda.

Despite its 2-0 start in Group II, though, State U has much room to improve, especially as it was outrebounded, 49-38, by the undersized Scorpions.

“Sa preseason leagues na ganito, we wanna give opportunities to the young guys. It’s not really about the minutes you get inside, but about staying ready e. Dito pa lang sa preseason, we wanna start to build that attitude,” said assistant coach Christian Luanzon who, alongside Tom Chua, called the shots in lieu of Goldwin Monteverde who’s in the U.S. for a recruitment trip.

CEU dropped to 1-1 despite the best efforts of Franz Diaz and Jerome Santos who had 15 and 13 points, respectively.

Earlier, Mapua University and St. Clare College of Caloocan entered the winners’ circle.

The time-tested tandem of Clint Escamis and Paolo Hernandez delivered the knockout blow that allowed the Cardinals to down fighting Lyceum of the Philippines University, 73-63, in Group I action.

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Escamis got 14 points to go along with four assists and two rebounds, while Hernandez fired 10 points of his own, including a triple with 1:41 remaining that doused cold water on the Pirates’ late 9-0 blaze. Warren Bonifacio then hit on a long-range shot of his own to put Mapua up, 71-62, with 65 ticks to go.

The 6-foot-2 Hernandez also added four rebounds and three assists to gift his longtime teammate his first win back in red-and-gold after two tries in the premiere preseason tournament supported by Filoil, EcoOil, Hanes, Akari, Reyes BBQ, BDO, Kalos Sportswear, and Molten.

Enoch Valdez was the lone player in double-digits for 1-1 LPU with 11 points on top of seven rebounds, two assists, and a steal.

Meanwhile, St. Clare College of Caloocan also earned its first win with a 78-55 decision over Faith College of Batangas.

NAASCU MVP Jimboy Estrada was a spark off the bench for the Saints with his 12 points, nine assists, and four rebounds, while Megan Galang and Racine Kane had 11 apiece in their breakthrough.

Lance Gabriel Villamor paced the Bravehearts with 12 points and six boards in their second straight loss.

The Scores:

First Game
St. Clare 78 – Estrada 12, Galang 11, Kane 11, Estacio 8, Cabauatan 7, Ndong 6, Tapenio 5, Yanes 4, Angeles 4, Acosta 4, Balacaoc 4, Victoriano 2, Decano 0, Burgos 0
FAITH 55 – Villamor 12, Navarez 11, Fernando 10, JM Torrato 10, JG Torrato 4, Llamado 2, Roxas 2, Millares 2, Laylo 2, Paguio 0, Amparo 0, De Castro 0, Quiros 0, Manipol 0
Quarterscores: 22-14, 48-24, 67-42, 78-55

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Second Game
Mapua 73 – Escamis 14, Cuenco 14, Hernandez 10, Recto 9, Fornis 7, Garcia 6, Bonifacio 5, Agustin 2, Igliane 2, Dalisay 2, Rivera 2
LPU 63 – Valdez 11, Bravo 9, Montano 9, Umali 8, Cunanan 6, Penafiel 6, Aviles 4, Villegas 3, Omandac 3, Barba 2, Alattica 2, Daileg 0, Garro 0
Quarterscores: 15-15, 34-27, 55-46, 73-63

Third Game
Letran 86 – Reyson 28, Javillonar 14, Cuajao 10, Tolentino 10, Fajardo 7, Guarino 6, Ariar 4, Miclat 3, Alarcon 2, Santos 2, Bojrocelo 0, Brillantes 0, Monje 0, Morales 0, Laquindanum 0
San Sebastian 82 – Calahat 25, Una 19, Gabat 11, Are 10, Desoyo 9, Concha 3, Pascual 3, Castor 2, Gabat 0, Paglinawan 0, Aguilar 0, Barroga 0
Quarterscores: 14-21, 42-44, 64-66, 86-82

Fourth Game
UP 91 – Belmonte 19, Abadiano 14, Lopez 10, Alarcon 10, Diouf 9, Cansino 8, Felicilda 6, Andrews 6, Gonzales 4, Torres 3, Pablo 2, Gagate 0, Briones 0
CEU 75 – Diaz 15, Santos 13, Cabotaje 8, Darbin 8, Balogun 7, Ferrer 7, Joson 5, Bernabe 4, Penano 4, Malicana 2, Javier 2, Tolentino 0, Anagbogu 0, Reyes 0
Quarterscores: 24-11, 49-33, 68-54, 91-75

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