San Beda University stepped on the gas in the third quarter to clobber Letran, 75-63, and stay on course to a sweep in the elimination round in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Season 95 seniors basketball tournament on Tuesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
Most Valuable Player frontrunner Calvin Oftana erupted in the middle quarters to power as the defending champions roared to a 20-0 run that snuffed the life out of the Knights.
Oftana scored 16 points spiked by three triples and six rebounds for the Red Lions, who need three more winds to sweep the 18-game eliminations.
“It’s really the players who worked hard for this. Our defense showed up after they had an 8-0 run. At least we recovered from that,” San Beda Head Coach Boyet Fernandez said. “We went back to our defensive mentality and made some stops, and we had a 20-0 run. It’s just the effort of the players.”
San Beda caught Letran by surprise for a 17-1 start. That didn’t last long as the Knights responded with an 8-0 run that leveled the game at 42-all with 6:21 left in the third quarter.
The Mendiola-based squad countered with those 20 unanswered points to end the period.
Clint Doliguez added 13 points, while Evan Nelle and James Canlas registered 12 apiece for the Red Lions.
Larry Muyang topscored for Letran with his 13 points that went with five rebounds. The team fell to 9-6.
Emilio Aguinaldo College, meanwhile, won its second straight game, 80-76, over University of Perpetual Help in the day’s other game.
Jethro Mendoza scored most of his 22 points in the payoff period for the Generals who improved to 3-11.
The loss was the Altas’ fifth consecutive to drop to 3-10.
Image credits: Nonoy Lacza