San Beda tops Ateneo to begin best-of-three semis in PCCL

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jan 21, 2019 06:17 PM
San Beda tops Ateneo to begin best-of-three semis in PCCL
San Beda got the better of Ateneo in the first meeting of the year between the collegiate champions

At the start of the best-of-three semifinals series in the 2019 Philippine Collegiate Champions League, it was clear to see that San Beda University was missing its main men just as Ateneo de Manila University remained intact.

That didn’t matter in the end, however, as the Red Lions wielded its young guns in the endgame to shoot down the Blue Eagles, 49-43, on Monday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.

Second-year studs Evan Nelle and James Canlas came up big and Cameroonian stalwart Donald Tankoua also came through to let the NCAA champions take a 1-0 lead in the race-to-two series up against the kings of the UAAP.

Nelle was impressive with 12 points, three rebounds, and two steals as he started in the place of now graduated Robert Bolick while Canlas also had timely contributions and totaled nine markers.

Calvin Oftana was right there as well with four points, all coming in the last two minutes, doing his very best to fill the void left behind by also departed Javee Mocon.

Of course, it was a much welcome development for San Beda that Tankoua was still there and posted 18 points.

It was Canlas and Clint Doliguez who got together for a 5-0 burst that increased a one-point edge into a 43-36 lead early in the final frame.

Of course, Ateneo would battle back to as close as 43-47 inside the last minute, but the Red Lions’ trademark disciplined defense coupled with Tankoua’s steady hands from the line of put the game away for them.

The NCAA champions look to finish off the kings of the UAAP in Game 2 of the semifinals series on Thursday at the Ynares Center in Pasig.

Already waiting in the Finals of the 2019 PCCL is University of Visayas.

Ange Kouame topped the scoring column for the Blue Eagles in this one with 13 points to his name.

BOX SCORES

SAN BEDA 49 – Tankoua 18, Nelle 12, Canlas 9, Oftana 4, Soberano 2, Doliguez 2, Etrata 2, Alfaro 0, Carino 0, Abuda 0, Cuntapay 0, Bahio 0, Toba 0.

ATENEO 43 – Kouame 13, Andrade 11, Navarro 7, Ravena 5, Belangel 5, Mamuyac 2, Go 0, Credo 0, Berjay 0, Ma. Nieto 0, Mi. Nieto 0, Mendoza 0.

QUARTER SCORES: 11-7, 22-24, 38-33, 49-43.

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