NCAA opener: Lions whip Altas; Stags triumph
MANILA—San Beda hardly missed its absent star, launching its title bid with an 82-52 rout of Perpetual Help at the start of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament yesterday at the Araneta Coliseum.
The hole the injured Sudan Daniel left in the middle hardly posed any problem as big men Dave Marcelo and Jake Pascual posted double-doubles to back up Rome dela Rosa’s strong start for the defending champion Lions.
“We played against a depleted lineup so it’s the kind of blowout I expected,” said San Beda coach Frankie Lim. “Compared with the bigs of other teams, I think we’re still okay.”
Last year’s runner-up San Sebastian also made do without the suspended Calvin Abueva as the Stags tripped the Jose Rizal Bombers, 73-67, in the second match.
Ian Sangalang shone for the Stags with 25 points—including a crucial undergoal stab that kept them on top, 66-63, with just a minute left—aside from grabbing 13 rebounds and accounting for half of the team’s eight blocks.
Ronald Pascual added 20 points for the Stags, who missed Abueva as the SSC star serve a one-game suspension for infractions incurred in last year’s title series.
“I believe in what they’re capable of and they just delivered,” said coach Topex Robinson after his debut win with the Stags.
Boxing icon Manny Pacquiao was a hit as the main guest during the opening ceremony that showcased a variety of cheers, dances and marching bands.
“Remember to offer your victories to your loved ones and school,” Pacquiao said in his seven-minute speech where the eight-division world champion shared anecdotes of his early struggles as an athlete.
“Accept defeat and consider them as lessons,” he added.
Anthony Tamayo, president of host Perpetual Help, also launched the Manny Pacquiao scholarship grant that will allow the ring star to give deserving students the opportunity to study in any Perpetual campus.
Dela Rosa topscored with 15 points as the Lions rolled to a 21-8 start against a Perpetual side that lacked the height and heft of its opponent.
Pascual shot 12 points and grabbed 13 rebounds and Marcelo had 10 markers and 15 boards for the Lions, who stretched their unbeaten streak in the league to 19 games after last season’s phenomenal 18-0 title romp.
Daniel—who watched from the gallery—will sit out the season due to an (ACL) anterior cruciate ligament injury he got during the summer games.
SAN BEDA 82—Dela Rosa 15, Pascual J. 12, Marcelo 10, Sorela 9, Lanete 7, Pascual K. 6, Villahermosa 6, Lim 5, Amer 4, Koga 3, Pontejos 3, Semerad D. 2, Caram 0.
PERPETUAL HELP 52—Arboleda 8, Elorpe 8, Paulino 7, Thomspon 6, Asuncion 6, Vidal 4, Sison 3, Alano 2, Sumera 2, Tonggal 2, Allen 2, Jolangcob 2, Parico 0.
Quarters:21-8, 41-23, 66-35, 82-52
SAN SEBASTIAN 73—Sangalang 25, Pascual 20, Semira 7, Balucanag 6, Maiquez 5, Del Rio 4, Antipuesto 2, Dela Cruz 2, Miranda 2, Vitug 0.
JOSE RIZAL 67—Carampil 19, Lopez 15, Apinan 9, Almario 6, Matute 5, Paniamogan 4, Kabigting 3, Villarias 2, Mendoza 2, Gaco 0, Dela Paz 0, Montemayor 0.
Quarters: 20-11, 36-27, 53-46, 73-67
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