Unrelenting effort from Letran key in stopping Jalalon, Chiefs
Hype has set in in the early stages of the NCAA season as Letran took on Arellano.
After 40 minutes of regulation, however, whatever ballyhoo surrounded the matchup fizzled out as the Knights dominated the Chiefs, 89-79, Thursday at San Juan Arena.
Letran held down Arellano to a paltry 38 percent shooting, 32/84, while Jio Jalalon, arguably the best point guard in the collegiate level, was limited to 17 points and 11 assists on 6/20 shooting.
Knights forward Rey Nambatac said facing off against Jalalon and the rest of the Chiefs, who are seen as the top contender among coaches before the season started, took utmost team effort.
“Para sa akin kailangan lang namin maging consistent,” said Nambatac, who had 22 points and was one of those responsible in defending Jalalon. “Kasi kami lang naman magtutulung-tulungan para manalo sa game so yun ang pinakita namin sa loob ng court na kahit lumamang kami, hindi pa rin bumibigay, atsaka inaalagaan namin lamang namin.”
McJour Luib virtually put the game away for the Knights with a triple with 1:45 left that pushed the lead to 85-73 en route to their third straight win.
Luib, who made all but two of his 17 points from beyond the arc, said everything began with stopping Jalalon.
“Natuwa ako kasi yun nga, na execute namin yung game plan namin, na-minimize si Jio,” said Luib. “Si Jio yun, hindi mo naman ma-ze-zero yun, number one point guard yun.”
“Kahit ganun stats niya, at least nagawa namin yung game plan namin na number one is to stop him, ayun pinagtulungtulungan talaga namin yun.”