PASAY CITY – San Beda College annexed its seventh consecutive National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Juniors Division championship by subduing gritty Arellano University, 70-61, Thursday afternoon (October 29) at the SM Mall of Asia Arena. This also marks the Red Cubs’ third championship under the guidance of Coach JB Sison.
Turning up the heat in the second half, the Red Cubs turned to the combined 12 points of Evan Nelle and Adie Velasquez to seize back the upper hand entering the fourth period, 52-49. Nelle continued his fine performance by drilling in a three at the 4:15 mark that raised San Beda’s margin to nine points, 63-54.
Germy Mahinay then delivered the key shots to insure the win. Poor free throw shooting down the stretch greatly affected the Braves’ chances of forcing a winner-take-all fourth game.
“We really worked hard for this,” said Coach Sison. “This was our goal for the season; it was all heart and all effort.”
Nelle’s efforts went well-rewarded as he was named as the Finals Most Valuable Player with 13 points and eight rebounds. Mahinay topped the Red Cubs with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Guilmer de la Torre topped the Braves with 15 points and five rebounds. Lars Sunga followed with 13 points and six rebounds.
The Red Cubs had to work double time to make up for injuries to key players Pedro Alfaro and JM Lagumen sustained in the previous game. The Braves took the said contest, 72-68, last Tuesday to force the decider.
Coach Sison is optimistic for next season as all his players will be returning. The rest of the championship roster is composed of Raphael Barbero, Joshua Tagala, Robi Nayve, Christian Samaniego, Prince Etrata, Ry de la Rosa, Albert Bordeos, Samuel Abuhijle, Luke Sese and Miguel Bonalos.
How They Scored:
SAN BEDA-RIZAL (70) – Mahinay 15, Nelle 13, Velasquez 12, Etrata 8, Bordeos 8, Abuhijle 6, Tagala 4, Nayve 2, de la Rosa 2, Barbero 0.
ARELLANO (61) – de la Torre 15, Sunga 13, Tamayo 12, Abadeza 9, Fornis 5, Danas 3, Espiritu 2, Bataller 2, Velasco 0, Calapine 0.
Period Scores: 14-17, 30-32, 52-49, 70-61.