Letran hands San Beda first defeat with 93-80 rout

By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN JUAN, MM--Coach Aldin Ayo's "magulong basketball" defense wrecked havoc on defending NCAA champion San Beda as Letran gets its third straight win with a 93-80 blowout in Round 1 of their "NCAA Clasico" season series at the FilOil Flying V Arena on Thursday night.

The Knights frustrated the Red Lions in the first quarter, limiting them to only four points in the first seven minutes of play en route to a 52-33 advantage at halftime.

The Red Lions slowly crawled back and came to within five, 76-81, with less than three minutes left in the game as the Knights lost Rey Nambatac due to foul trouble and Mark Cruz to cramps.

But McJour Luib ignited the game-deciding 12-4 run by Letran to seal the win and tie Perpetual Help at the top of the team standings.

Kevin Racal led five Knights in double figures with 20 points.

Ola Adeogun also made 20 markers for San Beda, which lost Baser Amer to the same shoulder injury he suffered during the PBA D-League Foundation Cup Finals with Hapee.

Box Scores:

Letran 93-Racal 20, Cruz 16, Nambatac 13, Calvo 12, Sollano 10, Apreku 9, Luib 6, Quinto 5, Balanza 2, Balagasay 0, Publico 0

San Beda 80-Adeogun 20, De La Cruz 18, Amer 10, Koga 7, Tongco 7, Tankoua 6, Cabanag 4, Mocon 4, Sorela 4, Reyes 0, Bonsubre 0, Presbitero 0, Sedillo 0

Quarterscores: 21-15, 55-32, 67-53, 93-80.