San Beda College shoots to keep its stranglehold of the lead as it clashes with Emilio Aguinaldo College (EAC) even as Mapua and Arellano University try to keep in step with the former today in the 92nd NCAA juniors basketball tournament at The Arena in San Juan City.
Drawing strength from the troika of Ed Velasquez, Joshua Tagala and Carlo Obenza, the Cubs survived the feisty Lyceum Junior Pirates, 97-88, on Thursday to book their second straight victory and remain at the helm.
Velasquez, Tagala and Obenza fired 16, 13 and 12 points, respectively, including a combined 22 points in the third quarter when the three turned a 45-48 halftime deficit into a double-digit lead San Beda eventually nursed to secure the win.
It was San Beda’s second win in a row after overpowering Letran, 107-74, last week.
A third could be coming against EAC, winless in two starts, in their 10:45 a.m. showdown.
“We’ll try to win as many games as we can,” said San Beda coach JB Sison, who is eyeing to steer the Taytay-based school to an unprecedented eighth straight high school championship.
Mapua and Arellano, also unbeaten in two outings, will attempt to keep in pace with San Beda as the two tangle with San Sebastian at 9 a.m. and Jose Rizal at 12:30 p.m., respectively.
Meanwhile, the league will take a weeklong break in full support of the Gilas Pilipinas basketball team seeing action in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament on July 5 to 8 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
The league will resume on July 11 with the juniors division and on June 12 with the seniors level both at The Arena in San Juan.