Defending NCAA champions San Beda College Red Lions locked down the Mapua University Cardinals early to secure a 66-55 win for their fifth straight victory, Friday afternoon at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
Already undermanned entering the season, the Cardinals were also without ace guard Andoy Estrella in the game, after he suffered an MCL injury during the break according to a team official. Moreover, second leading scorer Leo Gabo was only limited to just 4:17 minutes, having sprained his ankle during practice yesterday.
“Well sayang lang na injured yung top players ni coach Atoy [Co] especially Estrella and Gabo,” lamented San Beda head coach Boyet Fernandez.
Still, the Red Lions showed no mercy during the opening frame, limiting the Cardinals to just three field goals. On the other end, the troika of Donald Tankoua, Javee Mocon, and Davon Potts helped San Beda erect an early 17-2 lead.
Tankoua led the way for the Red Lions with 11 points and 16 rebounds, while Mocon added 10 points and six boards. Moreover, San Beda out-rebounded Mapua 54-40
San Beda’s lead went to as high as 25 points, 49-24, late in the third frame. However, the defending champions let their guards down in the final frame.
“If we played the way we played in the fourth quarter, I think we’ll have a hard time. We played bad in the fourth quarter,” Fernandez admitted.
Mapua out-scored San Beda 23-15 in the last 12 minutes of the contest, cutting the lead to as low as nine points, 55-64, after an Almel Orquina triple and a basket by Kim Magboo. Robert Bolick stopped any potential Mapua comeback, however, sealing the game with two late free throws.
“I just have to let the other guys realize na di pwedeng ganun ganun lang ang basketball. I hope my players realize that,” Fernandez added.
This is San Beda’s fifth straight win, for a 6-1 for solo second. Mapua, on the other hand, dropped their sixth straight game, bottoming out at 1-6.
Despite this, Christian Bunag played his best game in his young NCAA career with 20 points, 18 rebounds, and four blocks. Orquina and Magboo had 11 and 10 respectively.
San Beda will go on the road for the first time this season, taking on the Perpetual Altas on Thursday, August 17. Mapua, on the other hand, will have time to recover before taking on the Lyceum Pirates on Tuesday, August 22, at 2:00pm.
SBC (66) – Tankoua 11, Mocon 10, Potts 8, Bolick 6, Soberano 6, Cabanag 5, Carino 4, Bahio 4, Doliguez 3, Adamos 3, Tongco 2, Presbitero 2, Oftana 2, Abuda 0.
MU (55) – Bunag 20, Orquina 11, Magboo 10, Nieles 6, Victoria 4, Aguirre 2, Gabo 2, Jimenez 0, Raflores 0.
Quarterscores: 23-6, 31-20, 51-32, 66-55.
Rival coaches agree: Ramil de Jesus should coach National Team
Tyrus Hill, Kurt Lojera transfer to La Salle
Lady Eagles survive Golden Tigresses to clinch Final Four spot
Ateneo taking costly UP loss in stride
Kevin Belingon demolishes Andrew Leone, stakes claim as top contender
Giorgio Petrosyan, Nong-o Gaiyanghadao shine in Super Series debut
Honorio Banario frustrates Adrian Pang, stays unbeaten at lightweight
Clinical Gina Iniong outpoints Jenny Huang for bounce back win
Tiger Spikers squeeze into Final Four, outlast Soaring Falcons
Bryan Bagunas, Bulldogs end four-year curse against Blue Eagles
Tamaraws stamp twice-to-beat ticket, eliminate Green Spikers
Lady Falcons outmuscle Golden Tigresses in Season 80 finale
- ADMU2 days ago
Wendel Comboy, FEU rally from 17 down to stun Ateneo; Jun Manzo, UP hold off Letran
- ADMU5 days ago
Ateneo official says it was players decision not to attend National Team tryout
- FEU5 days ago
SMART Sports Player of the Week Bernadeth Pons continues to embrace the pressure
- Basketball4 days ago
Ricci Rivero still uncertain about collegiate career