Arellano’s rumbling rally frustrates San Beda, forces do-or-die

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 30, 2016 12:26 PM
Arellano’s rumbling rally frustrates San Beda
NOT TODAY. Arellano came from behind to force a do-or-die matchup with San Beda.

For three quarters on Friday at the MOA Arena, Arellano University looked like the team that had been defeated in all of their last five outings.

Then the final frame began and they looked like the Braves who not only dominated the first round, but also got the better of seven-time champion San Beda High School.

The Braves of the first round was back in form as they completed a come-from-behind 89-84 victory versus the Red Cubs in the Final Four of the NCAA 92 Juniors Basketball Tournament.

Battling back from as much as 17 points down, coach Tylon Dar Juan said they felt like they were destined to meet, and then beat, their modern-day rivals. “Ito nga yata yung tinakda sa amin, na iharap sa amin ang San Beda,” he expressed.

He then continued, “Tayo lang naman ang nakakatalo sa San Beda e kaya nga tinakda tayong itapat sa kanila.”

Dar Juan’s boys registered San Beda’s only loss in the season back in the first round. That certainly didn’t look to be the case early on in this one as the Cubs mounted an advantage of as much as 47-30 in the second.

Coming out of the halftime dugout, however, graduating players Guilmer Dela Torre and Carlo Abadeza took charge and scored seven points apiece in the third and pulled Arellano within 60-64 with one quarter to go. “Iniisip namin talaga na last game na namin. Yun ang motivation namin,” team captain Abadeza said.

The Braves weren’t stopping just yet in the final frame as their captain finally snatched away the lead for them, 64-62. San Beda took back control, however, with back-to-back threes from Evan Nelle and Robi Nayve giving them an advantage of 82-75 inside the last three minutes.

Jayson Danas took over from that point and pumped in six of his 10 points to spearhead the 14-2 run that finished the job on Arellano’s rumbling rally that discarded the Cubs’ twice-to-beat advantage. The two teams meet again on Tuesday to fight over the right to enter the Finals.

Lars Sunga topped the scoring column for the Braves with 16 points while Dela Torre and Abadeza added 15 and 15 points, respectively. With the win, they finally put an end to the five-game losing skid that dropped them out of the league-lead and all the way to the fourth-seed.

For San Beda, Sam Abu Hijleh, Prince Etrata, and Robi Nayve all scored 15 points. A defense that allowed 29 points in the pivotal period, however, did them in and dropped them to 1-2 against Arellano in the season.

BOX SCORES

ARELLANO 89 – Sunga 16, Dela Torre 15, Fermin 15, Abadeza 14, Danas 10, Bataller 7, Espiritu 5, Tamayo 3, Domingo 2, Dulatre 1, Velasco 1, Fornis 0, De Leon 0, Camarillo 0, Dimaunahan 0

SAN BEDA 84 – Abu Hijleh 15, Etrata 15, Nayve 15, Tagala 8, Mahinay 8, Nelle 6, Dela Rosa 6, Obenza 5, Alfaro 2, Lagumen 2, Garcia 2, Barbero 0

QUARTER SCORES: 18-25, 37-49, 60-64, 89-84

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