San Beda drops San Sebastian to set Finals date with perfect Pirates
LET'S GET IT ON. Javee Mocon had monster numbers to make sure San Beda was making a 12th straight trip to the Finals.
San Beda College will get two more chances, at the very least, to figure out undefeated Lyceum of the Philippines University in the NCAA 93 Men’s Basketball Tournament.
The Red Lions are in the Finals for the 12th year in a row after taking care of business against erstwhile streaking San Sebastian College-Recoletos, 76-71, on Tuesday at the MOA Arena.
Making it happen was the awesome twosome of Javee Mocon and Robert Bolick who were both on-point from the get-go.
Mocon posted monster numbers of 23 points, 22 rebounds, and five blocks while Bolick put forth 21 markers, four boards, four assists, and two steals to his name.
Donald Tankoua also added a 13-point, 11-rebound double-double to make sure San Beda would be defending its championship in the Finals up against the perfect Pirates on Friday at the Araneta Coliseum.
The defending champions went on an 11-2 blitz to begin the game and set the tone right from tip-off. “Nineteen days off, it’s really tough, but we had a very good schedule so we’ll be ready for Baste. I give full credit to my players because they sacrificed a lot in preparation for this game,” head coach Boyet Fernandez said, referring to the fact that the last time they played was October 19.
Of course, the Golden Stags were bound to battle back and neared to just 62-67 inside the last five minutes.
It was at that point, however, that Mocon had five points in the 9-0 run that put up a 76-62 lead for the Red Lions with three minutes remaining.
Baste again trimmed the deficit to single-digits, but didn’t have time on its side.
And so, the Red Lions are back in the championship round where they will again challenge and LPU side which had swept them in the elimination round. “I know we (were) beaten by LPU fair and square, but I still trust my players and I know they’ll come up big,” Fernandez said.
Even though they are the underdogs, Fernandez said they still have high hopes as their record in the last 11 Finals is an impressive 9-2 – only having lost to Calvin Abueva’s San Sebastian and Mark Cruz’s Colegio de San Juan de Letran.
For San Sebastian, Jayson David and Ryan Costelo topped the scoring column with 16 and 15 points, respectively.
Main man Michael Calisaan was held to just nine points in 5-of-16 shooting.
Despite their exit, however, the semifinals finish is nothing but a good sign for the traditional powerhouse.
SAN BEDA 76 - Mocon 23, Bolick 21, Tankoua 13, Soberano 9, Potts 6, Presbitero 4, Abuda 0, Cariño 0, Doliguez 0, Noah 0, Tongco 0.
SAN SEBASTIAN 71 - David 16, Costelo 15, Calisaan 10, Capobres 7, Calma 6, Gayosa 6, Bulanadi 4, Navarro 3, Ilagan 2, Mercado 2, Baetiong 0, Valdez 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 26-11, 44-31, 57-51, 76-71.
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