The Arellano University (AU) Chiefs beat defending champions San Beda College Red Lions, 86-79, in the FilOil Flying V Pre-season Premier Cup quarterfinals at the San Juan Arena on Tuesday.
The Chiefs relied on the prowess of Jiovanni Jalalon and Dioncee Holts to spark their comeback in the fourth quarter to seal the win over San Beda.
Jalalon finished with 21 points, 10 assists, eight rebounds and five steals to lead his squad to their first semifinals appearance in the pre-season tilt.
Arellano proved to be the hungrier squad by posting a 20-17 lead at the end of the first quarter.
San Beda woke up in the second period to post a narrow 37-36 lead by halftime.
It was a close fight until the third quarter until the Chiefs posted a one-point edge, 59-58, with just 10 minutes left to play.
San Beda team captain Dan Sara nailed a shot from beyond the arc to bring the Bedans forward, 69-59, in first five minutes of the final canto but the duo of Jalalon and Holts, together with Zach Nichols, sparked a late-game rally to beat the titleholders.
Holts notched 16 points off a perfect shooting performance from the field together with nine boards while Nichols finished with 16 markers including two crucial treys in the final quarter.
Lervin Flores also stepped up for Arellano with an output of 10 points and four rebounds while Michael Salado and Michael Canete had eight and seven points, respectively.
Big man Donald Tankoua led the Red Lions with 20 points and 16 boards while Sara had 16 markers, three rebounds and three assists.
JV Mocon posted 15 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists also for San Beda.
Meanwhile, the National University (NU) Bulldogs also secured a seat in the semifinals after trouncing the Adamson University Soaring Falcons, 65-57.
The Bulldogs shrugged off a slow start to establish a lead over the Falcons, 27-26, before the midgame intermission.
The Falcons retaliated in the second half bringing the score to a 43-43 deadlock going into the final quarter.
But National U pulled off a 22-point explosion before the final buzzer to push the Falcons out of contention.
Med Salim led the Bulldogs with 12 points, four rebounds plus two blocks while teammates Alfred Aroga and Rev Diputado had 10 and nine points each.
The FilOil Cup semifinals begin on Friday, June 10.