Altas conquer Lions; Knights alone on top | Inquirer Sports

Altas conquer Lions; Knights alone on top

By: - Reporter / @cedelfptINQ
/ 09:52 PM September 10, 2015

PERPETUAL’S Bright Akhuetie attacks the basket off San Beda’s Ola Adeogun in yesterday’s thriller at Filoil Flying V Arena.       AUGUST DELA CRUZ

PERPETUAL’S Bright Akhuetie attacks the basket off San Beda’s Ola Adeogun in yesterday’s thriller at Filoil Flying V Arena. AUGUST DELA CRUZ

Nigerian behemoth Bright Akhuetie capped his dominant performance with the game-winning shot as Perpetual Help nipped San Beda, 88-86, Thursday night to gain a share of third spot in the 91st NCAA basketball tournament at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

The 6-foot-8 center, who returned from a one-game absence due to a shoulder injury, banked in a shot at the buzzer off a clever pass from seldom-used center Nestor Bantayan as the Altas survived a frenetic, nip-and-tuck battle on their way to raising their record to 9-4, in a tie with the Arellano Chiefs.

“I knew we could have beaten them in the first round, but we talked among ourselves to come out strong and make it even,” said Akhuetie, who finished with a game-high 31 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.

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Perpetual Help’s victory boosted Letran to the solo lead, after the Knights went on a late tear for a 79-69 win over the St. Benilde Blazers.

Mark Cruz poured a game-high 20 points, including eight in the final period, while Kevin Racal dished out 18 points, five assists, five steals and three rebounds for the Knights, who collected their 11th win in 13 outings.

Akhuetie provided the highlight of the night, dunking in front of San Beda center Ola Adeogun to give the Altas a 75-74 lead with 4:10 remaining.

Reigning MVP Scottie Thompson took charge down the stretch, scoring or assisting on seven of Perpetual Help’s last nine points, as he bucked a slow start and finished with 14 points, eight rebounds and eight assists.

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Facing the defending champions and the prospect of losing their grip in the Final Four race, the Altas put in one strong collective effort with Flash Sadiwa and GJ Ylagan rising to the challenge combining for 24 points.

The scores:
First Game
LETRAN 79—Cruz 20, Racal 18, Luib 16, Sollano 9, Quinto 9, Nambatac 5, Apreku 2, Calvo 0, Balagasay 0.
ST. BENILDE 69—J. Domingo 14, Grey 14, Ongteco 12, Saavedra 10, Nayve 6, S. Domingo 5, Jonson 3, Young 3, Fajarito 2, Deles 0, Castor 0, Sta. Maria 0.
Quarters: 13-22, 40-38, 54-56, 79-69
Second Game
PERPETUAL 88—Akhuetie 31, Thompson 14, Ylagan 14, Sadiwa 10, Oliveria 6, Eze 5, Bantayan 4, Dizon 2, Cabiltes 2, Tamayo 0, Coronel 0, Gallardo 0, Dagangon 0, Elopre 0.
SAN BEDA 86—Adeogun 26, Dela Cruz 15, Mocon 12, Koga 11, Amer 10, Tankoua 8, Reyes 4, Cabanag 0, Soberano 0, Sara 0, Presbitero 0, Tongco 0, Sorela 0.
Quarters: 14-17, 39-35, 61-60, 88-86

NCAA season 91 men’s basketball standings | Create infographics
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TAGS: Basketball, Bright Akhuetie, NCAA, Ola Adeogun, Perpetual Help Altas, San Beda Red Lions, Sports

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