Mapua escapes Lyceum's second half surge to go to .500

Josan Nimes beat Shaq Alanes in their shootout. Ric Arlos
By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN JUAN, MM--Just when Mapua was already on its way to an easy Friday NCAA victory, Lyceum made matters interesting in the end.

The Cardinals nearly squandered a 43-point lead but held on to a 109-95 win against the Pirates at the FilOil Flying V Arena.

Mapua opened the game on a 7-0 run and raced to a 64-21 lead late in the second quarter, eventually keeping the gap at 40 at the half.3

But Lyceum, after reportedly getting a flak from a rarely furious Coach Topex Robinson inside the dugout, nearly pulled the improbable as the team clawed to within six, 95-101, with 1:30 left in the game.

The sending off of Coach Atoy Co made matters worse for the Cardinals, but they bounced back in the end by scoring the match's last eight points.

Allwell Oraeme, more known for his defense, led all Mapua scorers with 26 points along with 20 rebounds, five blocks, and one steal, while Josan Nimes added 24 points, six rebounds, and six assists.

Shaq Alanes, who led Lyceum's near comeback, had a game-high 27 points on 9-of-18 shooting.

The Cardinals moved up to 3-3 while dropping the Pirates to 1-5

Box Scores:

Mapua 109-Oraeme 26, Nimes 24, Biteng 12, Isit 9, Raflores 9, Nieles 7, Aguirre 6, Serrano 6, Menina 5, Que 5, Stevens 0, Layug 0

Lyceum 95-Alanes 27, Ayaay 22, Baltazar 14, Nguidjol 8, Lacastesantos 6, Mbida 6, Bulawan 3, Soliman 3, Sunga 3, Gabayni 2, Lugo 1, Malabanan 0, Marata 0, Taladua 0, Elmejrab 0

Quarterscores: 34-12, 68-28, 86-63, 109-95