San Beda, playing with more urgency in the second half, repulsed Emilio Aguinaldo College, 80-65, yesterday to notch back-to-back victories for the first time in the NCAA Season 89 men’s basketball tournament at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.
The three-time defending champion Red Lions regained their lethal form just in time to wear down the Generals in the last two quarters to improve to 3-1 and gain solo third.
Unable to come out with the aggressiveness they showed in their 64-57 win over Arellano last week, the Lions played catch-up for the majority of the first half before taking control behind Art dela Cruz and Baser Amer and pinning a third loss on the Generals.
“It’s good that the bench is getting more and more comfortable because we are going to need everyone to step up this season,” said starting center Kyle Pascual, who finished with eight points.
Later, Jamil Ortuoste poured 11 of his 14 points in the fourth quarter and in overtime as the Stags outlasted erstwhile unbeaten Perpetual Help, 78-77, to even their card at 2-2.
Perpetual fell to 2-1 and tied idle Lyceum for third place.
But the Altas put the Stags’ victory under protest, citing an incident in the second period when Jessie Rebollos fouled Juneric Baloria, who, they claimed should have been given free throws. Altas team captain Harold Arboleda signed the scoresheet after the game to signify the protest.
Dela Cruz, the hero in San Beda’s first win of the season against St. Benilde, finished with 18 points and grabbed nine boards. Amer tallied 14 points and dished nine assists.
Earlier, San Beda and San Sebastian extended their unbeaten start to four games. The Cubs dumped the EAC Brigadiers, 108-59, while the Staglets cruised to a 110-79 win over the Junior Altas.
Seniors First Game
SAN BEDA 80—Dela Cruz 18, Amer 14, Dela Rosa 9, K. Pascual 8, Adeogun 6, Sara 6, Abarcar 5, Koga 4, Ludovice 4, A Semerad 4, D. Semerad 2, Bonsubre 0, Villaruz 0, Abatayo 0.
EAC 65—King 18, Tayongtong 12, Jamon 10, Habbi 8, Arquero 7, Paguia 3, Monteclaro 3, Castro 2, Hiole Manga 2, Munsayac 0, Saludo 0, Morada 0.
Quarters: 16-18, 34-39, 58-52, 80-65