Lions grab share of lead

Games Today (The Arena in San Juan)
8 a.m. Perpetual Help vs LSGH (jrs)
10 a.m. Arellano vs Mapua (jrs)
12 nn Perpetual Help vs CSB (srs)
2 nn Arellano vs Mapua (srs)
4 p.m. JRU vs Letran (srs)
6 p.m. JRU vs Letran (jrs)

ARTHUR dela Cruz led three other teammates score in double digits to help the San Beda Red Lions bounce back in a big way yesterday in the 91st National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball tournament at the Arena in San Juan.

Dela Cruz fired 25 points and had eight rebounds for the Red Lions as they fended off the Lyceum Pirates, 87-80, pulling off the win after bowing to the Perpetual Help Altas, 86-88, the previous day.

Ranbill Tongco added 14, while Baser Amer and Ola Adeogun fired 12 and 11, respectively, to lead the Red Lions to their 11th triumph in 14 games.

Because of this, the Red Lions are back in the lead, with the Letran Knights on similar 11-3 slates.

The 6’2” Dela Cruz and Tongco combined for 14 points in the second quarter, and their efforts allowed the Red Lions to widen their edge, 49-31, at halftime.

“It’s nice when you come from a heartbreaking loss and you get good effort from everybody. That’s what good coaching is all about,” said Red Lions coach Jamike Jarin.

Meanwhile, Jamil Ortuoste and Spencer Pretta struck hard in the second quarter to carry the San Sebastian Stags to a 91-77 pummeling of the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals.

Ortuoste scored 24 points, while Pretta banged in 19 to lead the Stags to their fourth win in 14 matches.

With the Stags already out of contention, coach Rodney Santos told the team to just simply enjoy the game and not worry about its outcome.

Their efforts handed the Stags a 51-35 halftime advantage.

Francis Munsayac hit 21 points for the Generals, who have a 2-12 slate.

In the junior division, Sam Abuhijle and Joshua Tagala fired 18 points apiece to carry the defending champion San Beda Red Cubs to a 90-79 thumping of the Lyceum Junior Pirates.

Their 14th straight victory moved them four games away from an 18-game sweep and an outright finals berth.

Michael Jabagat fired 18 points to lead the SSC Staglets past the EAC-ICA Brigadiers, 84-83, and hike the record to 4-10.

The Brigadiers (7-7) found their semifinal hopes in trouble after they fell out of their share of fifth with La Salle Greenhills (7-6).

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