San Beda-Taytay withstands late FEU-FERN run to enter NBTC Division 1 final

By Ivan Saldajeno

PASAY—San Beda-Taytay nearly blew a hot start but still held on to defeat FEU-FERN, 93-89, in the first semifinal of Division 1 of the NBTC National Finals at the Mall of Asia Arena on Wednesday.

The Red Cubs sizzled in the first half, scoring 59 points in the first 20 minutes.

They were on course of walking away with a rout, but the Baby Tamaraws pulled off a fourth quarter rally that trimmed the lead to as close as four, 89-85, with under two minutes to play.

San Beda-Taytay held on as FEU-FERN failed to close out the match.

"Nagulat ako. Halftime pa lang, naka nine threes na kami. Yung consistency lang sa effort. Nag-relax kami. Buti na lang di nagtuluy-tuloy yung run ng kalaban. Na-weather namin," said Coach JB Sison after the game.

Evan Nelle had his best performance in the tournament, burying six triples for 20 points with two rebounds, six assists, and two steals for the Red Cubs, who will take on the winner of the other Division 1 semifinal between the Sacred Heart Magis Eagles and the Malayan Red Robins, which is ongoing as of posting.

Ljay Gonzales led FEU-FERN with 21 points, while Kenji Roman and Jack Gloria each achieved double-doubles.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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