The San Beda College Red Lions celebrated the return from injury of Baser Amer and Ola Adeogun with a big 108-80 victory over the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals on Thursday in the 91st National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) basketball tournament at The Arena in San Juan City.
The five-time straight champions Red Lions are now occupying the top spot solo with a 2-0 slate. San Beda’s first victory was against the Mapua Cardinals, 102-89, during the opening day.
San Beda immediately dictated the tempo of the game establishing an early 23-14 lead that later ballooned to 41-28 behind the accurate shooting of Arthur de la Cruz, Rabill Tongco and Baser Amer.
A fiery 17-6 run by De la Cruz, Amiel Soberano and Jeramer Cabanag enabled them to stretch the lead to 58-34 with 56 seconds left before the first half. Tongco scored on a jumper to post a big 35-point lead for his team, 88-53, a few seconds before the fourth period ended.
The 6’3 De la Cruz playing for his final year with San Beda finished with 22 points, 12 rebounds, four assists and two steals while Adoum Abba Mbang led the EAC Generals with 17 points.
“I think, we are not yet in full shape. We are not yet satisfied with our game we still need to do more. We are happy with the return of Baser Amer and Ola Adeogun from injury at least we are complete already,” said De la Cruz.
In the other game, the Mapua Institute of Technology beat the San Sebastian College – Recoletos 88-86.
Meanwhile, a six-game schedule will unfold today featuring the Lyceum Pirates against the Arellano Chiefs at 12 p.m. while the Saint Benilde Blazers will collide with the University of Perpetual Help System DALTA Altas at 2 p.m. Another match between the Letran Knights and the Jose Rizal Heavy Bombers will happen at 4 p.m.
In the Juniors division, the Lyceum Junior Pirates will take on the Arellano Braves at 8 p.m. while the CSB-LSGHS Baby Blazers will battle the UPHSD Altalettes at 10 a.m. In the third game, the Letran Squires will face the Jose Rizal Light Bombers at 6 p.m.