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Teodoro’s heroics helps JRU survive Grey’s career-high, Benilde

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Tey Teodoro keeps the Jose Rizal University Heavy Bombers in the Final Four race!

In a highly intense game that went down the wire, Teytey Teodoro once again came up clutch as his team’s closer and pull off a 73-69 victory against the College of Saint Benilde Blazers at the Filoil Flying V Arena on Tuesday afternoon.

Despite missing early attempts from the perimeter, the Blazers tasted a minimal lead at 7-6 with JR Ongteco drilling two free throws. The first quarter was tight with Jonathan Grey and Teytey Teodoro leading their respective teams scoring-wise. The Blazers’ defense also stood tall that limited jumpers from the JRU as the Bombers went cold in the first quarter points. JRU entered double-digit scoring at the 1:42 mark of the first with Abdel Poutouchi making two baskets underneath and eventually help his squad to tie the game at 12 at the end of the first ten minutes of action.

CSB opened up the second quarter on a hot start with an 8-0 run capped by a triple by Grey. The Blazers were also crashing the boards and making the extra passes on their plays to extend their second quarter rally. Meanwhile, Teodoro’s reinsertion aided JRU as he snapped a cold start of his team to the second quarter with a three point play off a fastbreak lay in and trim CSB’s lead to 25-20 with a little over five minutes to go.

With JRU’s one-two punch of Paolo Pontejos and Teodoro fielded in, the duo ignited JRU’s fight back in the second quarter as they built a 13-2 run in the middle of the quarter to take the lead. Despite Grey’s 17 points at the end of one half, JRU held a three point edge after the first half as they shot a better 48% clip compared to CSB’s 33% in addition to more paint points, 18-10.

The level of intensity notched a level with the offensive exchange showcased by the two teams. CSB clogged the paint defensively but they had a hard time barging into the slim two-point lead of JRU during the opening minutes of the second. The Heavy Bombers responded to the baskets put up by the Blazers to retain their lead as Marco Balagtas nailed a wide open jumper to extend the lead to 46-40 halfway into the third.

Afterwards, Grey was still scoring for his squad as a triple during a 10-2 response gave Benilde the lead once again. However, Teodoro, Pontejos and Grospe scored the quarter’s last six points as JRU retake the lead at 57-52 at the end of 30 minutes of play. Fast forward after another intense exchange of baskets in the final period, Benilde rallied behind Grey’s career game together with JJ Domingo’s bank shot three to tie the game at 64 with 4:17 left.

Four more points added by JRU answered another triple by Grey to make it a 68-67 match entering the dying minutes of regulation. Grey missed a top of a key triple attempt and suffered from cramps after and eventually had to sit out the last minute of the game. After successive exchanges, Teodoro split his free throws, but had a crucial steal in the last 15 seconds and convert it to a layup en route to the two-possession lead and ice the game.

“Ang JRU, lagi naman nasa situation na yan,” Vergel Meneses said after the game. “I just tell my players pag gusto niyo maglaro, okay lang sa akin, pag hindi, okay lang din,” he said about how he keeps his players motivated even with a slim chance of going back to the Final Four. “The more I put pressure on them, di kakayanin ng mga bata.”

The Heavy Bombers were led by Tey Teodoro’s 17 markers. Even in shooting just 5/13 from the field, the Smart Elite ambassador was clutch. He added six boards, three assists, and two steals. Paolo Pontejos and Abdoul Poutouochi both added 13 points each as well with the latter grabbing 15 rebounds as well.

For the losing team, Jonathan Grey had a career-high 34 points. He was 11/20 from the field and 7/8 from the charity stripe. He also grabbed seven boards and dished out four dimes. JR Ongteco complemented the effort with 10 points and 8 rebounds.

The JRU Heavy Bombers (8-6) will face the league-leading Letran Knights on Friday, September 18 at 4:00pm while the CSB Blazers (3-11) have the Perpetual Altas as their next assignment on the same day at 12:00nn.

The Scores:
JRU (73) – Teodoro 17, Pontejos 13, Poutouochi 13, Balagtas 10, Grospe 10, Sanchez 4, Abdulwahab 3, Estrella 2, Dela Paz 1, Lasquety 0, Cruz 0, Dela Virgen 0.
CSB (69) – Grey 34, Ongteco 10, Domingo JJ 9, Deles 7, Jonson 3, Nayve 3, Fajarito 3.
Quarterscores: 12-12, 35-32, 57-52, 73-69

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