After seeing Mapua take care of business earlier, San Sebastian made sure to do the same against the Arellano Chiefs, eking out an 85-82 win in the NCAA Season 95 Seniors Basketball Tournament, Tuesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
It was an important victory for the Golden Stags, as they kept their lead over the Mapua Cardinals. San Sebastian is at 10-7, one full game ahead of Mapua.
The win also ended Benilde’s Final Four hopes.
“Ang mahirap kasi, with all the limited players that I have, ‘yung playoff medyo mahirap pa rin para sa amin,” said San Sebastian head coach Egay Macaraya.
And their lack of bodies affected the game.
Thanks to the trio of RK Ilagan, Allyn Bulanadi, and Ken Villapando, San Sebastian led by nine points, 82-73, with 41.5 ticks left.
Kent Salado and Alfren Gayosa then gained the hot hand, cutting the lead down to five in a furious rally. However, timely free throws from Bulanadi and Rommel Calahat were enough to seal off the Chiefs.
Ilagan had 20 points, six rebounds, and three assists for the Stags. Bulanadi had 19 points, eight rebounds, and six assists.
JM Calma and Alvin Capobres added 15 markers each, with the former also grabbing nine boards. Villapondo tallied 12 points and 10 rebounds.
Kent Salado led the way for Arellano with 26 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and four steals. Justin Arana added 13 points, but was limited to just three rebounds.
The Chiefs dropped to 4-13.
SSC-R 85 –– Ilagan 20, Bulanadi 19, Calma 15, Capobres 15, Villapando 12, Calahat 4, Tero 0, Desoyo 0, Cosari 0, Altamirano 0, Sumoda 0, Isidro 0.
AU 82 — Salado 26, Arana 13, Concepcion 10, Bayla 9, Gayosa 8, Sablan 7, Talampas 3, Espiritu 3, Oliva 2, Alcoriza 1, Sacramento 0.
Quarterscores: 22-18, 33-35, 57-56, 85-82.