SAN JUAN City – College of Saint Benilde gave rookie coach Tyrone Tang a memorable first win by trouncing Mapua Institute of Technology, 64-49, at the resumption of the 11th FilOil Flying V Premier Cup Wednesday (May 3) at the FilOil Flying V Centre. This early, the changes brought about by the new coaching regime definitely yielded positive results for a team that won only one game in the previous NCAA.
Saint Benilde turned to their defense to come from behind, limiting the Cardinals to only six markers in the fourth period and all before the two-minute warning. The Blazers slowly rallied via the free throw line as MIT had no choice but to give up fouls with Yankie Haruna, Clement Leutcheu and rookie Unique Naboa delivering.
Guard Gerard Castor led the Blazers’ balanced attack with nine points on top of five rebounds, two assists and two steals. “I’m having fun playing,” said Castor, who was supported by center Kendrix Belgica with eight points and six rebounds.
Edward Dixon broke Saint Benilde’s long silence from the field with an under goal stab plus a foul at the 16-second mark, 62-49. Dixon missed the bonus shot but an MIT turnover led to two more free throws from Naboa for the final count.
Christian Bunag paced the Cardinals with 12 points and 13 rebounds as he tried to fill the void at center created by the absence of back-to-back NCAA MVP Allwell Oraeme. Almel Orquina hit two triple to finish with eight points and four rebounds.
How They Scored:
SAINT BENILDE (64) – Castor 9, Belgica 8, Haruna 7, Sta. Maria 7, Dixon 7, Naboa 6, Leutcheu 6, JJ Domingo 4, Mercado 4, Suarez 2, Young 2, San Juan 2, Pili 0, Johnson 0.
MAPUA TECH (49) – Bunag 12, Orquina 8, Pelayo 7, Victoria 7, Serrano 6, Estrella 6, Aguirre 2, Gabo 1, Gamboa 0, Nieles 0, Magboo 0, Raflores 0.
Period Scores: 15-15, 23-28, 41-43, 64-49.