Lyceum of the Philippines University routed Arellano University, 98-86, to claim the last of the two important Final Four twice-to-beat incentives in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Season 99 men’s basketball tournament yesterday at the Filoil EcoOil Arena.
The Pirates lived up to their name and clobbered the Chiefs from start to finish to secure their 13th win in 17 outings that ensured them of one of the top two seedings as well as the vital semifinal advantage that goes with it.
“We’re happy to get the No. 2 spot and the twice-to-beat advantage but the job is not yet done,” Lyceum coach Gilbert Malabanan said.
“This is just the start of the path we’re on. We want to achieve our goal and that’s what we want to tell our players.”
Mclaude Guadaña and John Barba spearheaded the attack and fired 17 points apiece while Shawn Umali and Enoch Valdez chipped in 15 and 11 points, respectively.
The Chiefs sank deeper into the standings with a 2-15 mark
Lyceum had actually claimed the second Final Four berth after surviving San Sebastian, 83-80, Friday.
But unlike the last time when the Pirates were a little sluggish and overconfident for their own good, they didn’t leave any stone unturned against the Chiefs and just dominated the duel.
Arellano showed some resistance in the first two quarters but went downhill from there after getting buried by an avalanche that the Pirates unloaded starting in the third quarter when Lyceum broke loose for good.
Although assured of all the things needed to get the necessary edge in the playoffs, Lyceum is still expected to go all out when it clashes with San Beda University in its final elimination round assignment.
LYCEUM (98) — Guadaña 17, Barba 17, Umali 15, Valdez 11, Bravo 9, Montano 6, Penafiel 6, Omandac 6, Villegas 5, Cunanan 3, Moralejo 3, Versoza 0, Aviles 0.
ARELLANO (86) — Talampas 20, Capulong 17, Mallari 14, Sunga 12, Geronimo 6, Yanes 6, Camay 5, Lustina 2, Dela Cruz 2, Ongotan 2, Villerente 0, Dayrit 0, Tan 0, Rosalin 0.
QUARTERS: 21-16; 51-44; 80-65; 98-86.