Letran shows heart, San Beda still comes out on top

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jun 25, 2016 04:56 PM
Letran shows heart, San Beda still comes out on top
STATEMENT. San Beda showed just how deep they are in handling Letran from start to finish.

Without a doubt, Colegio de San Juan de Letran showed the heart of a champion at the MOA Arena, Saturday.

Still, San Beda College proved to have much too many weapons and put down their archrival Knights for a thrilling 89-85 triumph in the very first game of the NCAA 92 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Under siege by Letran’s pressure-cooker defense, the Red Lions found their once 13-point advantage gone and the tally tied at 60-all near the end of the third.

Unlike their archrivals who lost Rey Nambatac due to cramps, however, San Beda had the depth to sustain their offensive. In particular, it was first-year player Davon Potts who scored seven points in the pivotal 13-4 push that re-established a 73-64 lead for his team.

The Knights kept coming, however, and pulled to within three, 79-82, inside the last two minutes before Javee Mocon and Potts had back-to-back hits to keep them at bay for good. Potts wound up with 16 points while Mocon, who set the tone early, contributed 18 points and six rebounds.

Glad to come away with the tournament-opening win, coach Jamike Jarin said, “We made mistakes and we had to pay for that. I’m just happy that we got away with a tournament-opening win.”

The loss to their archrivals means Letran will no longer be able to match their undefeated start last year. Bong Quinto led the way for them with 23 points while Nambatac collected 18 points, nine rebounds, seven assists, and three steals before sitting out because of cramps.

BOX SCORES

SAN BEDA 89 - Mocon 18, Potts 16, Sara 14, Tankoua 13, Tongco 9, Bolick 7, Noah 4, Presibitero 3, Navarro 2, Soberano 2, Bonsubre 1, Adamos 0, Alas 0, Carlos 0, Oftana 0.

LETRAN 85 - Quinto 23, Nambatac 18, Calvo 13, Sollano 11, Balanza 8, Apreku 7, Luib 5, Balagasay 0, Dela Pena 0, Pambid 0, Sario 0.

QUARTER SCORES: 27-17, 45-36, 62-60, 89-85.

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