Despite Jio Jalalon’s emergence as one of the league’s primary guards, Arellano University needs to be more cohesive especially when it faces Letran College on Thursday in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Season 92 men’s basketball tournament at The Arena in San Juan City.
The Chiefs, who are also gunning for a third straight win to tie early leaders San Beda College and Mapua on top, will clash against the reigning champion Letran Knights at 4 p.m. while University of Perpetual Help System Dalta battles San Sebastian College in the first game at 2 p.m.
Mapua and San Beda are currently tied on top with identical 3-0 records followed by Arellano in third with 2-0.
“We need to be more cohesive against Letran. Jio [Jalalon] is doing a lot of things but he can’t do it alone,” Arellano University coach Jerry Codinera told The Manila Times in a phone interview on Wednesday. “Even if he scores a lot then ends up losing, his performance is meaningless. We need to prove that we’re not only a strong team on paper. We have to work very hard.”
Jalalon is averaging 28 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and five steals in two games. He scored season-highs 33 points and 11 assists along with eight steals to lead Arellano to a 99-91 victory over San Sebastian last July 1.
Besides Jalalon, the Chiefs will also lean on Dioncee Holts, Zachary Nicholls, Donald Gumaru, Michael Salado, Julius Cadavis and rookie Lervin Flores.
Letran, on the other hand, aims for third win when it goes up against Arellano. The Knights, who possess a 2-1 win-loss record, will bank on Rey Nambatac, McJour Luib, John Quinto, and Jom Sollano.