Jose Rizal University (JRU) bounced back from a previous defeat while Arellano University secured the lead behind Jiovanni Jalalon’s prowess in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Season 92 men’s basketball tournament at The Arena in Pasay City on Tuesday.
The Heavy Bombers, after a 60-63 loss to the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals last week, blasted the San Beda Red Lions, 97-88, behind Teytey Teodoro’s 28 points, five triples included and six rebounds.
JRU, with a win-loss record of 9-6, is now No.4.
“To tell you honestly, we’re not thinking of that (reaching No. 1 or No. 2 in the Final Four). What is important is we reach the Final Four,” Meneses told The Manila Times.
“At the same time, I’m encouraging also the players not to think about the other teams or the team standings. We just have to focus on ourselves and I believe we can achieve it. We just have to follow the system.”
Mark Dela Virgen contributed 20 points including four triples while Mark Cruz had 11 points. Abdoulad Poutouochi finished with 10 points, eight assists, six rebounds and two blocks while Ervin Grospe chipped in 10 points for JRU.
After back-to-back losses, San Beda College with an 11-4 win-loss record dropped to No.2 behind top team Arellano University. Jayvee Mocon led the Lions with 26 points and nine rebounds.
Without the injured Donald Tankoua, the Red Lions struggled in their last five games.
In the first match Arellano University leaned on Jalalon’s explosive last period to escape Lyceum of the Philippines University, 78-75, and emerge solo leader with an 11-3 win-loss record.
Jalalon tallied 15 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter in addition to six rebounds while rookie big man Lervin Flores registered 15 points, five rebounds and four blocks to lead the Chiefs. Kent Salado posted 13 points also for Arellano.
“Jio (Jalalon) just stepped up for us. Lyceum has big guards that’s why they are very tough,” said Arellano coach Jerry Codiñera. “We really needed that (Jalalon’s performance) and of course the support of the bench.”
Lyceum’s win-loss record dropped to 5-10 and the team is now out of the Final Four race.
In the third game, swingman Rey Nambatac finished with 26 points plus seven rebounds as Colegio San de Letran won 69-63 over University of Perpetual Help System DALTA for its eighth win.
John Quinto notched 12 points, Jom Sollano 11 points and Jerrick Balanza another 11 points for the Knights, whose win-loss record improved to 8-7.
Nigerian Bright Akhuetie led the Altas with 15 points and 13 rebounds.
Perpetual Help’s win-loss record dropped to 10-4 and is now occupying the third spot.