Lyceum of the Philippines University (LPU) torched a luckless Mapua University (MU), 97-74, to sweep the first round of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Season 93 basketball tournament on Friday at the FilOil Flying V Center in San Juan City.
The Pirates sailed to a blazing start and sustained their dominance of the 40-minute match en route to their ninth win in as many games. The win marked the school’s first sweep in history.
But Lyceum head coach Topex Robinson wanted his wards to maintain their relentless aggression into the next round.
“We have nine more games to play. We still have to work on our turnovers since that remains our problem,” said Robinson, whose men committed 21 turnovers.
Interestingly, Robinson was also the mentor of the San Sebastian College-Recoletos team that last achieved a sweep in Season 87.
CJ Perez caught fire for the Pirates anew as the athletic forward finished with 18 points, seven rebounds and two assists while Wilson Baltazar chipped in 12 markers.
Christian Buñag put up a double-double of 17 points and 14 rebounds while JB Raflores contributed 16 markers for the Cardinals, who absorbed their seventh loss against a win.
The Pirates put up a massive 19-point advantage, 31-12, early in the second period.
Lyceum’s lead ballooned to 78-46 late in the third frame and the league-leading squad never looked back for the rest of the game.
Meanwhile, Levi Dela Cruz came through with a breakout game as Arellano University (AU) nailed a come-from-behind 87-81 win over College of St. Benilde (CSB) to snap a four-game losing skid.
Second-string playmaker Dela Cruz exploded with 24 points on 9-of-13 shooting from the field as the Chiefs fought their way back from 16 points down in the second quarter en route to their third win in eight games.
The pint-sized guard also starred in a pivotal 15-2 run halfway the payoff period, which saw Dela Cruz drain three of his four triples in the game.
Lervin Flores helped out with a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds while Kent Salado managed to add nine markers for the Chiefs.
The Blazers’ woes continued as they closed their first round campaign with a 2-7 card despite Clement Leutcheu’s career-high 21 points on top of 10 rebounds and three other St. Benilde cagers posting double-digit scores.
AU (87)- Dela Cruz 24, Flores 14, Salado 9, Alcoriza 8, Nichols 7, Enriquez 7, Concepcion 6, Taywan 4, Meca 4, Canete 4, Padilla 0, Villoria 0, Filart 0, Ongolo Ongolo 0.
CSB (81)- Leutcheu 21, Dixon 14, Sta. Maria 10, Domingo 10, Castor 8, Naboa 6, Pili 6, San Juan 3, Young 3.
Quarterscores: 19-20; 35-47; 58-62; 87-81
LPU (97)- Perez 18, Baltazar 12, Santos 9, Pretta 9, Tansingco 8, Marcelino JV 8, Ayaay 7, Nzeusseu 6, Marcelino JC 6, Liwag 4, Ibanez 3, Caduyac 2, Marata 2, Cinco 2, Serrano 1.
MU (74)- Buñag 17, Raflores 16, Nieles 13, Gabo 10, Aguirrre 8, Victoria 4, Orquina 4, Magboo 2, Jimenez 0.
Quarterscores: 22-8; 52-34; 80-51; 97-74