San Sebastian thwarts Perpetual Help, secures playoff for 2nd place
With Ian Sangalang and Ronald Pascual in tow, the Stags restored order en route to an 80-62 win over the Altas Thursday night in the NCAA Season 88 men’s basketball tournament at the FilOil flying V Arena in San Juan city.
“We were lucky we had a lead,” said SSC head coach Allan Trinidad on Abueva fouling out.
“We made some adjustments on our defense but our offense was still sloppy; sana just in time against San Beda ma-improve namin,” added Trinidad, whose squad battles defending champion San Beda on Monday.
Sangalang, this season’s would-be MVP, chalked up another double-double with 16 points and 16 rebounds on top of two steals and two blocks.
Pascual, on the other hand, shot 18 points, all of which from three.
Abueva picked up two straight fouls, one personal and a technical after a resentment to a call with still 6:08 left.
The Altas, who would’ve claimed the last Final Four spot if they had won, pulled to within seven, 58-65, at the 5:57 mark after trailing by as much as 20.
But that was the closest Perpetual Help came as San Sebastian, which secured at least a playoff for the No.2 spot, went on a 9-0 run sparked by back-to-back inside baskets by Sangalang.
“We were also lucky (Babayemi) wasn’t dominant today,” added Trinidad.
Femi Babayemi failed to fill the void left by the injured Nosa Omorogbe. Babayemi attempted just one shot for measly two points, had nine rebounds but hardly made any impact.
Jet Vidal also struggled with just 12 points despite jacking up 21 attempts from the field and making only three.
Anthony Paulino paced Perpetual Help, which faces Jose Rizal University in a playoff for the last semifinals slot, with 13 points.
The Stags led, 61-41, after a triple by Pascual but went scoreless in seven minutes bridging the third and the fourth quarter to let the Altas trim their lead.
Abueva, the second overall pick by Alaska in the PBA, still ended up with 19 points, 17 rebounds and seven assists but committed 10 turnovers.
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