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Letran reasserts mastery over Mapua

Games tomorrow:

(FilOil EcoOil Centre)

12 p.m. — Perpetual vs Lyceum

3 p.m. — Saint Benilde vs Arellano


Reigning champion Letran College reasserted its mastery, booking a 67-62 victory over Mapua University in Season 98 National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball tournament Tuesday, 27 September at the Filoil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.

Fran Yu was impressive while Paolo Javillonar and King Caralipio chipped in significant numbers for the Knights, who prevailed in the rematch of their dramatic finals showdown last year.

Yu fired 15 points, four rebounds and five assists while Javillonar added 14 markers and three boards for the Knights, who now share the top spot with rival San Beda University and Lyceum of the Philippines University with a 3-1 win-loss mark.

Caralipio, meanwhile, added the defensive muscles with eight points and 11 rebounds for Letran, which was led by the same core that made their title run in Season 97 possible.

“I’m happy with my veterans stepped up. The composure was there. Mapua was very physical in the game,” Tan said, adding that they were bracing for a rugged battle against the Cardinals.

“A win is a win but looking forward to the game, I don’t know what will happen.”

But plucking the win wasn’t easy.

Despite being ahead by 10 in the final 4:57, 60-50, the Knights flirted with disaster with Brian Lacap and Arvin Gamboa dropping a 9-1 bomb to cut the lead to two, 61-59, with only 1:11 left.

Yu, however, doused cold water on the sizzling Mapua really as he hit a three-pointer before Kurt Reyson canned a pair of charities to seal the victory with only 34 seconds to go.

Lacap fired 12 points, but it wasn’t enough as the Cardinals absorbed their fourth straight loss in their first five games.


The scores:

LETRAN (67) – Yu 15, Javillonar 14, Caralipio 8, Reyson 8, Monje 7, Sangalang 6, Paraiso 5, Santos 3, Olivario 1, Miclat 0, Tolentino 0.

MAPUA (62) – Lacap 12, Salenga 11, Hernandez 9, Nocum 8, Soriano 6, Pido 6, Bonifacio 4, Gamboa 4, Parinas 2, Garcia 0, Igliane 0.

QUARTERS: 15-10, 33-32, 48-46, 67-62

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