Mapua University dominated its first matchup against San Beda University in NCAA Season 99 as the Cardinals tamed the Red Lions, 75-57, on Friday at the Filoil Ecooil Centre.
Clint Escamis almost had himself a triple double as he headed Mapua’s attack on both ends of the court, dropping a full statline of 14 points , seven rebounds, eight assists, two steals, and a block.
Paolo Hernandez did his work early for the Cardinals as he led the team in scoring with 17, all of which came in the first half. Warren Bonifacio then added 13 points of his own.
“Yung unang game plan namin is depensahan yung Cortez, hindi naman namin alam na mag-early foul trouble. Yun yung magandang nangyari. It starts with these two guys (Clint Escamis and Paolo Hernandez). Yung energy nagstart kay Paolo, tapos nagkahawaan na. Pati yung second unit nag-contribute,” said coach Randy Alcantara.
The Cardinals refused to give the Red Lions any opportunity to build momentum, as San Beda only found themselves with the lead after the first bucket of the game, with Damie Cuntapay knocking in a bucket.
The Cardinals focused their game plan on stopping Jacob Cortez, zeroing in on San Beda’s lead guard to minimize his impact.
With San Beda’s primary playmaker struggling, Mapua took advantage. The Cardinals ended up outscoring the Red Lions in every quarter to take the victory.
“Sabi ko nga huwag kami maging kampante, magkakumpiyansa. Nakita ko naman on the court talagang solid yung mga players, yun lang kailangan lang talaga yung mentalidad namin huwag mag-relax,” said Alcantara.
Mapua went up to 2-0 for the season as it rests at a tie with Lyceum of the Philippines University atop the standings.
The Cardinals face the ailing Jose Rizal University on Sunday, October 1,2023 at 12:20 p.m in the Filoil Ecooil Centre.
For San Beda, Alex Visser was the lone player to hit double digits, chipping in 10 points and six boards to try and keep his squad in the game. With Mapua’s guards hounding him throughout the game, Cortez was limited to nine points, one assist, and four turnovers.
San Beda fell to 1-1 for the season, tied with College of Saint Benilde and Jose Rizal University. They look to bounce back on Sunday against Benilde 2:40 p.m in the Filoil Ecooil Centre.
Mapua 75- Hernandez 17, Escamis 14, Bonifacio 13, Recto 9, Cuenco 8, Soriano 6, Rosilio 3, Asuncion 3, Fornis 2, Bancale 0, Igliane 0, Dalisay 0, Morenos 0
San Beda 57– Visser 10, Cortez 9, Andrada 8, Gallego 7, Cuntapay 7, Alfaro 5, Tagle 5, Gonzales 3, Puno 2, Jopia 1, Payosing 0, Llanera 0
Quarterscores: 21-16, 45-33, 60-44, 75-57