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GMC stuns Letran, but Knights still make FilOil QFs

Deo Cuajao had a decent showing as Letran did just enough to enter the FilOil EcoOil Preseason Cup quarterfinals. FilOil EcoOil Sports (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—Despite falling short of completing a comeback, a fourth-quarter blast was enough for Letran to clinch a spot in the FilOil EcoOil Preseason Cup quarterfinals despite an 84-79 win by Guang Ming College in the second leg of their play-in series on Thursday at the FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan City.

Needing to avoid losing by 12 points or more to keep their place in the next round, the Knights found themselves in huge danger of bottling their place in the playoffs after the Flying Dragons came alive in the second and third quarters to open a 71-52 lead entering the fourth.

GMC, however, fizzled down the stretch as Letran cut the lead down to three, 82-79, with 33 seconds remaining in the final frame.

Dikachi Ududo iced the game for the Flying Dragons with a jumper with 26 seconds left, but the Knights' deficit was already respectable enough to clinch the series.

Edziel Galoy led Letran, which will face old rival La Salle in the quarterfinals on Friday, with 23 points, eight rebounds, one assist, and three steals off the bench.

Pao Javillonar added 19 points on 6-of-9 field goals, six rebounds, and one steal.

Ududo led GMC with 19 points, 12 rebounds, one assist, one block, and two steals.

The game had to be played at a morning tip-off as the Knights had to rush to the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig for their PBA D-League Aspirants Cup semifinal battle against longtime rivals Marinerong Pilipino-San Beda Red Lions.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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