The De La Salle-College of St. Benilde (CSB) Blazers relied on their singles matches to upset the Colegio de San Juan de Letran (CSJL) Knights, 2-1, in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Season 92 men’s lawn tennis Final Four second round at the Rizal Memorial Tennis Courts in Malate, Manila on Monday.
Radha Reyes posted the first win for CSB at the expense of Adjuthor Moralde, 6-2, 6-4. But Letran’s Hilbert San Jose and Ivan Valenzuela retaliated beating Mav Victoria and Ricarte Santos, 6-4, 6-4.
“I want them (Victoria and Santos) to push themselves to their 100 percent. There were breaks of the game but that’s really part of the game. But I’m happy with their performance so far. They’ve been playing their 100 percent all the time,” said CSB assistant coach Michael Paz.
In the deciding match, CSB’s Jet Asilo dispatched Carlo Nono in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4.
Meanwhile, the San Sebastian College-Recoletos (SSC-R) Golden Stags upset defending champions San Beda College (SBC) Red Lions, 2-1.
Francis Parangan survived San Beda’s Whismark Basanal in a three-set thriller, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4, in the first singles match. San Sebastian’s Ramzie Manongsong and John Paul Gulfo completed a come-from-behind victory against Andre Rodriguez and Erick Fernandez, 3-6, 6-3, 6-3.
Andre Tuason notched the lone victory for San Beda in the last singles match after John Ismael Sanga retired in the third set, 6-7, 7-6, 2-0.
The CSB Blazers will battle the San Bed Red Lions, while the San Sebastian Golden Stags will face the Letran Knights at 8 a.m. on Tuesday at the same venue.
Keeping a 2-0 win-loss record, the CSB Blazers remained at the top spot in the second round, while the San Sebastian Golden Stags and the San Beda Red Lions were tied at second with a 1-1 card. The Letran Knights landed at the bottom of the ranks with a 0-2 slate.
“For the coaching staff, we will definitely push them to their 100 percent. We might make a couple of adjustments with the players but our lineup—they’re there,” Paz concluded.
In the juniors’ division, the Arellano University Braves and the San Beda Red Cubs swept the Lyceum of the Philippines University Junior Pirates and the San Sebastian Golden Staglets, respectively, 3-0.