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Arboleda's free throws lift Altas over Red Lions

By Dugout Philippines

Harold Arboleda played as the hero for the Perpetual Help Altas as he knocked down two free throws with 0.2 second left to give them a 76-75 win against the San Beda Red Lions in a crucial NCAA game at the FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan City.

The Altas built a 14-point lead, 68-54, with about seven minutes left in the game they needed to win to stay in contention for a Final Four berth.

But the Red Lions launched a 16-4 run in the next six minutes to cut the lead down to two, 72-70.

Arboleda converted two charities in the next play to extend Perpetual Help's advantage to four, 74-70.

Ola Adeogun then turned the ball over in the ensuing possession, giving the Altas a chance to extend their lead.

Adeogun, however, made up for the error by blocking Justine Alano's shot and securing the rebound.

Jong Baloria fouled Adeogun in the rebounding sequence, putting the latter to the free throw line for a chance to tie the game.

Adeogun made the first charity but missed the second; but Arth Dela Cruz converted the putback to give the Red Lions a 75-74 lead.

The Altas nearly lost the ball in the next play but retained possession with 1.2 seconds left.

Arboleda received the inbound pass and faked Dela Cruz, forcing the foul putting Arboleda to the line for three free throws.

Arboleda missed the first free throw but made the right adjustments to make the next two, putting the Altas up, 76-75, with 0.2 second left.

Perpetual Help disrupted the intended alley-oop pass to Adeogun at the final horn and escaped with the hard-fought win.

Baloria led Perpetual Help with 22 points, six rebounds, five assists, and three blocks.

Seldom used Gab Dagangon added 18 points, six rebounds, and two steals.

Meanwhile, Adeogun had a double-double of 20 points and 16 boards along with three swats for San Beda.

The Altas now moved to within a half-game from the JRU Heavy Bombers and the CSB Blazers for the third and the fourth spots in the team standings.

The Altas also foiled the Red Lions' bid to secure the first twice-to-beat bonus come the semifinals.

Box Scores:

Perpetual Help 76-Baloria 22, Dagangon 18, Alano 12, Arboleda 9, Thompson 7, Jolangcob 6, Oliveria 2, Bantayan 0, Gallardo 0

San Beda 75-Adeogun 20, Amer 10, Mendoza 10, De La Cruz 9, A. Semerad 8, Tongco 8, Cabanag 4, Pascual 4, Koga 2, Abatayo 0, D. Semerad 0, Solera 0

Quarterscores: 15-13, 34-31, 63-49, 76-75
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