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JRU trounces defending champ La Salle in opening game stunner

By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN JUAN, MM—How about an upset to start the FilOil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup?

JRU made a strong statement after shocking defending champion La Salle, 85-81, in the very first game of the 2017 edition at the FilOil Flying V Centre on Monday.

The Heavy Bombers started the fourth quarter strongly and held off a late push by the Green Archers to seal the win.

JRU opened the payoff period on a 16-6 run to open a 78-69 advantage with 4:43 remaining.

La Salle still inched closer, drawing to within two, 81-83, with 1:45 left in the ballgame.

The team, however, could not complete the comeback as the squad missed two potential go-ahead triples and Ben Mbala lost the ball in the third serving.

Free throws from Gio Lasquety and MJ Dela Virgen sealed the upset.

Despite a relatively sluggish performance, Teytey Teodoro still led the Heavy Bombers with 17 points, one assist, and one steal.

Jed Mendoza added 15 points, five rebounds, three assists, and one steal.

Ben Mbala paced the Archers with 22 points, 16 rebounds, and two blocks.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno