Salado makes sure Chiefs remain in playoff hunt

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 05, 2017 04:25 PM
Salado makes sure Chiefs remain in playoff hunt
DRIVE. Kent Salado and Arellano are still alive and kicking in the NCAA 93 Men's Basketball Tournament.

Arellano University has a lot of ground to cover if it is to advance into the next round of the 93rd Season of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

That is only more motivation for Kent Salado who put the Chiefs on his shoulders in their 30-point rout, 95-65, of also-ran College of St. Benilde on Thursday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.

The floor leader for the boys from Legarda posted a 16-point, 11-assist double-double all while orchestrating the offensive which made good on 50 percent of its attempts. “Expected naman sa kanya yun, pero maganda rin ang support group niya ngayon,” a more than satisfied head coach Jerry Codinera said.

Indeed, Salado wasn’t alone and had five other teammates also in double-digits.

Rence Alcoriza scored all but two of his 11 points in Arellano’s hot start, Zach Nicholls fired eight of his 13 points in their even hotter finish, and Lervin Flores contributed 12 markers and eight boards of his own.

Their defense also held up its end by forcing 24 turnovers and quickly converting them into 25 points.

With their most convincing victory of the tournament, the Chiefs sent a statement that they aren’t going away that easily. “Very important win for us, hindi ko na ma-exaggerate. Hindi mo pa alam ang mangyayari e,” Codinera said.

Still, their 6-9 standing is only good for joint possession of the sixth spot – with 9-6 Jose Rizal University at third, 8-7 Colegio de San Juan de Letran at fourth, and 7-7 San Sebastian College-Recoletos at fifth.

Nonetheless, Codinera and his crew remain upbeat. “Actually, if we end up with nine (wins), baka kaya pang mag-third. I think we still have a good chance,” he expressed.

The Blazers just could not keep up as Kendrix Belgica was their lone effective player with 18 points and eight rebounds.

Already eliminated from contention, the 3-13 team is still determined to play spoiler for their remaining assignments.

BOX SCORES

ARELLANO 95 - Salado 16, Nicholls 13, Flores 12, Abanes 11, Alcoriza 11, Dela Cruz 11, Viloria 8, Cañete 4, Enriquez 4, Meca 3, Padilla 2, Concepcion 0, Ongolo Ongolo 0, Taywan 0, Filart 0.

CSB 65 - Belgica 18, Domingo 14, Naboa 8, Dixon 5, Leutcheu 5, San Juan 4, Johnson 3, Sta. Maria 3, Young 3, Pili 2, Castor 0, Suarez 0, Velasco 0.

QUARTER SCORES: 28-16, 47-33, 69-50, 95-65.

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