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San Beda ends TIP’s impressive PCCL run to begin back-to-back title bid

Dan Sara scored clutch baskets to keep TIP at bay. (file photo)
By JA Espiritu

SAN JUAN, MM--The magical Cinderella run of the TIP Engineers ended at the hands of the mighty PCCL defending champions San Beda Red Lions.

The Red Lions squeaked past the Engineers with a 79-77 thriller on Tuesday at the Filoil Flying V Arena.

The Red Lions, however, needed to withstand the Engineers, who clawed their way back from a 22-point deficit in the third quarter to make it an interesting endgame.

San Beda was in cruise control and already leading by 22 midway thru the 3rd quarter when TIP started to put a full-court pressure defense, leading to multiple turnovers and hurried shots and gave TIP scoring opportunities on the break.

The Engineers' quick buckets to cut the once-insurmountable lead down to 12, 66-54, heading into the payoff period.

Jemuel Namocatcat then started to wax hot and kept the Engineers within striking distance midway thru the fourth.

TIP clawed its way back and drew to within five, 73-78, with two minutes left in the fourth, but could not convert on two crucial occasions, derailing its upset hopes.

Former De La Salle Green Archer Robert Bolick scored eight of his 13 points in the first quarter and played a great all-around game in his first game as a Bedan.

Donald Tankoua chipped in with 13 points. Newcomers Arnaud Noah and Davon Potts contributed 11 points apiece.

Newly appointed team captain Roldan Sara finished with 12 points with timely clutch baskets in the final minutes to keep San Beda’s back-to-back PCCL title bid alive right on its national tournament debut.

Graduating players Namocatcat and Jorey Napoles paced the Engineers with 17 and 15 respectively.

San Beda set up an NCAA finals rematch with Letran for a PCCL Final spot on Wednesday.

Box Scores:

San Beda 79–Bolick 13, Tankoua 13, Sara 12, Potts 11, Noah 11, Tongco 7, Mocon 4, Soberano 3, Oftana 3, Bonsubre 2, Presbitero 0, Carlos 0, Cabanag 0, Sedillo 0, Adamos 0

TIP 77–Namocatcat 17, Napoles 15, Tumalip 10, Benavides 10, Alcober 8, Ibanes 6, Akrupu 5, Roldan 4, Gadon 2, Okoronkwo 0, Lara 0

Quarterscores: 25-15, 49-29, 66-54, 79-77

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