Stags, Bombers smother rivalsBy Marc Anthony Reyes
Philippine Daily Inquirer
GAMES THURSDAY (San Juan Arena)
4 p.m.—Mapua vs Arellano
6 p.m.—San Beda vs Letran
MANILA, Philippines—San Sebastian squandered a 20-point lead but still had enough spunk to down defending champion San Beda, 80-71, even as Jose Rizal pounced on out-of-sync Letran to score a 101-83 rout last night as they shared top spot in NCAA men’s basketball at San Juan Arena.
The Stags, powered by their own version of Big 3 namely Calvin Abueva, Ronald Pascual and Ian Sangalang, surged to a 35-15 advantage early in the second quarter which threatened to turn the game many dubbed as “bad blood’’ into bloodshed.
But Baser Amer, flung triples to highlight the Red Lions’ searing rally, the last one in the dying seconds of the third quarter that pushed San Beda to within 58-59.
That’s until Pascual once again found his range from the three-point lane, and Abueva his magic touch and made things right again for 2009 champion San Sebastian.
The PBA-ready Abueva finished with 21 points, 21 rebounds and nine assists, while Pascual topscored with 28 points on 7-of-13 three-point shooting. Sangalang added nine points and 10 rebounds.
“We expected them to come back, given that they are the defending champions, what is important is that we made the stops we didn’t try to protect the lead,’’ said SSC coach Topex Robinson.
Like the Stags, the Bombers rose to 7-2.
JOSE RIZAL 101—Villarias 29, Matute 25, Carampil 12, Lopez 12,Almario 9, Mabulac 4, Camasura 4, Dela Paz 3, Mendoza 2, Salaveria 1,Porter 0.
LETRAN 83—Kevin Alas 31, Racal 15, Cortes 15, Cruz 14, Kr Alas 4, Lituania 2, Gabawan 2, Luib 0, Almario 0, Belorio 0.
Quarters: 19-17, 48-38, 74-54, 101-83
SAN SEBASTIAN 80—Pascual 28, Abueva 21, Maiquez 11, Sangalang 9, Dela Cruz 4, Antipuesto 3, Rebullos 2, Juico 2, Binuya 0, Miranda 0, Balucanag 0.
SAN BEDA 71—Caram 17, Amer 14, J. Pascual 10, K. Pascual 6, Lim 6, Dela Rosa 6, Adeogun 4, Dela Cruz 0, Koga 0.
Quarters: 32-15, 46-31, 59-58, 80-71