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Basketball

NCAA 99: Also-ran EAC denies CSB of outright Final Four berth


Despite being eliminated from what could have been its first Final Four in NCAA Seniors Basketball Tournament history, Emilio Aguinaldo College entered its final match of Season 99 with a vengeance, denying the College of Saint Benilde a direct Final Four berth after a 77-69 victory on Wednesday at the Filoil Ecooil Centre.

The Generals saw their advantage slipping in the second half, but a fourth-quarter storm allowed them to leave the Blazers behind in the dust.

“I was very upset last game. We didn’t show up, we didn’t play hard on the first half of our last game and I just reminded the boys we wanted to end this season with a win. Getting momentum going into next season, ayaw namin malungkot going into the dugout. I told the boys in the huddle, ‘Ayokong bumalik ng dugout na malungkot’,” said head coach Jerson Cabiltes, explaining his squad’s motivation to get the win.

Holding just a slim 50-49 lead near the end of the third, the Generals commanded an 18-2 run that gave Benilde no fighting chance. Though the boys in green tried sparking a late comeback, EAC refused to look back as it took the victory.

Nat Cosejo had a game-high 26 points with 10 rebounds and three assists.

Alongside him was JP Maguliano who had a double-double of his own with 12 points and 10 boards.

The Generals end their season with a 9-9 record, tripling the number of wins they had in Season 98 as their future looks brighter than ever despite missing out on postseason basketball.

Miguel Corteza led the way for Benilde with 19 points, while Mark Sangco followed closely with 12 points and nine rebounds.

#ReadMore  NU outlasts UST in hard-fought game to bounce back

Robi Nayve and Will Gozum chipped in 10 points each.

With an 11-6 record, the Blazers await the result of Jose Rizal University’s final game against Mapua University before knowing the fate of their Final Four slot.

Should Jose Rizal University win, a playoff for the Final Four will be scheduled.

The Scores:

EAC 77- Cosejo 26, Maguliano 12, Gurtiza 9, Angeles 9, Robin 6, Luciano 5, Umpad 3, Cosa 3, Ochavo 2, Bacud 2, Tolentino 0, Quinal 0, Doria 0

CSB 69- Corteza 19, Sangco 12, Nayve 10, Gozum 10, Cajucom 8, Carlos 4, Oczon 2, Marcos 2, Turco 2, Arciaga 0, Mara 0, Jarque 0, Morales 0

Quarterscores: 21-16, 28-33, 52-49, 77-69

Written By

Vito Martin is a sportswriter from the Philippines. In 2023, he graduated from the Ateneo De Manila University with a degree in BS Psychology. He wrote for Ateneo’s official school publication The GUIDON, where he covered basketball, football, baseball, badminton, and other collegiate sports. He is a life-long fan of the Boston Celtics and an avid follower of the NBA


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