Coming off a close loss to defending champion San Beda Red Lions last Tuesday, the College of Saint Benilde Blazers pounded the hapless Jose Rizal University Heavy Bombers, 81-66, Tuesday afternoon at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
“It’s about consistency. We were [in] total control until the third quarter until Robert hit us with us some threes, offensive combos,” recalled second-year head coach TY Tang. “It was the morale of our team. ‘Di pa sanay sa grit-and-grind na game. That’s what we really lack as a team. Hopefully we correct ourselves every single game.”
With the win, the Blazers are now an even 2-2 in the standings, while JRU dropped to a listless 0-5 slate.
Playing without senior floor general MJ dela Virgen, the Heavy Bombers still managed to keep close with the Blazers. With 4:23 left in the game, JRU – a team already badly in need of warm bodies – also lost Justin Padua after he was slapped with a disqualifying foul.
Clement Leutcheu and the rest of the Blazers took advantage, zooming past the Heavy Bombers the rest of the way. CSB would lead by as much as 17 points after a euro step to a layup move by Luis Velasco.
Leutcheu had an efficient outing with 20 points and 14 rebounds, while Yankie Haruna added 15 markers.
Edward Dixon and Unique Naboa tallied 10 points and seven rebounds as well.
“We’re a young team. We haven’t been together for a long time. Talking about consistency I don’t think we played with that today we had a lot of unforced turnovers we weren’t able to execute on our plays but it’s still a win,” added Tang.
Jed Mendoza paced JRU with 16 points, five rebounds, six assists, and four steals; however, he was forced to commit nine turnovers. Mark Mallari added 14 markers.
Saint Benilde look to raid the Letran Knights on their home floor on Thursday, August 2, in Intramuros. JRU, on the other hand, will have a tough task as they try to stun the Arellano Chiefs on Friday, August 10.
CSB 81 – Leutcheu 20, Haruna 15, Dixon 10, Naboa 10, Pagulayan 8, Carlos 5, Barnes 4, Pasturan 3, Domingo 2, Gutang 2, Velasco 2, Nayve 0, Young 0.
JRU 66 – Mendoza 16, Mallari 14, Miranda 8, Silvarez 6, Bordon 4, David 4, Padua 4, Ramos 4, Esguerra 3, Estrella 3, Aguilar 0.
Quarterscores: 16-15, 37-27, 58-45, 81-66.
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