NCAA: Oraeme-less Mapua escapes EAC
Sans reigning Most Valuable Player Allwell Oraeme, Mapua survived a furious fight from a pesky Emilio Aguinaldo College side, 70-67, to stay unscathed in the NCAA Season 92 men’s basketball tournament Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
The victory kept the Cardinals at the top of the heap at 4-0, tying San Beda for the number one spot.
Almel Orquina carried Mapua with 13 points and five rebounds, while CJ Isit got 12 markers, three assists, and two boards.
“We didn’t play exactly how we hoped to play, but we just needed to grind it out and we need games like this,” said Isit.
Andrew Estrella also tallied 12 points and six rebounds.
Oraeme sat the game out after spraining his ankle in practice.
The Cardinals looked at the game as a chance for the other bigs to step up.
“I think in a way, it’s a blessing in disguise. It gave opportunity for the other bigs to get minutes and experience,” Isit said.
EAC had its chances to force overtime, but failed to capitalize in the end game.
Trailing 69-67 with 17.3 seconds left in the game, Francis Munsayac threw the ball away as his pass to Jerald Serrano to the left corner went long. After a split from Estrella on the other end, Munsayac raced down the court but back ironed his potential game-tying trey.
Hamadou Laminou paced EAC (1-3) with 13 points, 17 rebounds, and two blocks, while Sidney Onwubere also had 13 markers, eight boards, and three assists in the loss.
MAPUA 70 – Orquina 13, Estrella 12, Isit 12, Eriobu 9, Biteng 6, Bunag 6, Victoria 6, Menina 4, Serrano 2, Magboo 0, Raflores 0.
EAC 67 – Laminou 13, Onwubere 13, Morada 12, Munsayac 11, Diego 8, King 7, Pascua 2, General 1, Corilla 0, Estacio 0, Guzman 0, Serrano 0.
Quarters: 19-10, 36-37, 56-53, 70-67.
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