DEFENDING champion San Beda proved too much for University of Perpetual Help System Dalta, scoring a 102-56, to extend its unbeaten run to six games yesterday in the NCAA men's basketball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
The Red Lions were expected to have a hard time against the Altas, but the Mendiola-based cagers simply dominated the 40-minute match.
San Beda set season highs in points (102) and in three-point attempts made (16) and recorded the biggest winning margin of the tournament (46).
Lyceum of the Philippines University ended College of Saint Benilde's five-game winning run with a 74-71 victory to cap a three-game bill.
Mapua continued its rise from a 0-5 start, dumping Jose Rizal University, 83-63, for its third consecutive victory.
Coach Boyet Fernandez was satisfied with the way his now league-leading Red Lions delivered, which served as a good warm-up to their Finals rematch with the Pirates.
"Credit to my boys for this win. They wanted to prove something. We really had a good game against Letran, but they really wanted to prove to themselves that the win against Letran was not a fluke. This gave us a lot of confidence going to the game against LPU on Tuesday," said Fernandez.
The seniors shone for San Beda, as AC Soberano scattered all of his 15 points from beyond the arc in 14 minutes of action while Cameroon's Donald Tankoua also had 15 points to go with six rebounds and two steals.
"Hopefully tuluy-tuloy na rin yung kumpiyansa ni AC because we do need him in the next games to come. Donald stepping up again, but well, it’s really the boys who played well today. Na-mention ko lang si AC at si Donald but everybody stepped up today, so congratulations, my boys," said Fernandez.
With defense as calling card, the Lions are looking ready for the Pirates' patented run-and-gun game.
"Sana, we’ll continue to be consistent in our defensive mentality in looking forward to the game against LPU on Tuesday," said Fernandez.
The Pirates squandered a 68-48 lead late in the third period and weather a huge Blazers fightback in the fourth to dislodge their opponents in second place.
"We have to give credit to CSB because they kept on pursuing. We know that they gonna be playing their best basketball. We will always take this win. Our boys stepped up and took the challenge," said LPU coach Topex Robinson.
San Beda (102) - Tankoua 15, Soberano 15, Nelle 12, Doliguez 12, Canlas 10, Oftana 9, Bahio 7, Cuntapay 6, Obenza 6, Alfaro 5, Abuda 3, Etrata 2, Noah 0, Visser 0.
Perpetual (56) - Charcos 13, Peralta 13, Adamos 12, Lucero 10, Egan 4, Tamayo 2, Martel 2, Giussani 0, Razon 0, Sese 0, Barasi 0, Sevilla 0, Lanoy 0.
Quarterscores: 30-17, 47-27, 78-39, 102-56
Mapua (83) - Victoria 24, Hernandez 20, Buñag 10, Bonifacio 8, Lugo 7, Gonzales 5, Nieles 5, Serrano 2, Gamboa 2, Aguirre 0, Garcia 0.
JRU (63) - Miranda 19, Dionisio 14, Delos Santos 10, Macatangay 5, Amores 4, Arenal 4, Abaoag 4, Steinl 3, Dela Rosa 0, Jungco 0, Aguilar 0.
Quarterscores: 14-13, 31-29, 58-46, 83-63
LPU (74) - Marcelino JC. 23, Nzeusseu 17, Santos 7, Caduyac 6, Marcelino JV. 6, Tansingco 6, Yong 4, Pretta 3, David 2, Navarro 0, Ibañez 0, Valdez 0, Guinto 0.
CSB (71) - Leutcheu 15, Nayve 11, Haruna 9, Gutang 6, Dixon 6, Flores 6, Pasturan 5, Naboa 5, Sangco 4, Lepalam 2, Belgica 2, Young 0, Carlos 0.
Quarterscores: 22-23, 43-36, 68-51, 74-71