Thursday, August 11, 2011


History Lesson: 
The Knights brought out the broom and swept the Generals, beating them in their two encounters last season. In the first round, Letran used a 21-10 turnover point edge and a 12-5 second chance point advantage to rout EAC, 88-65, led by sniper JP Belencion's 18 markers. Round two was more of the same, with the big difference being turnover points again, as Letran overwhelmed Emilio Aguinaldo to the tune of 27 to 13, leading to a 68-47 win. Belencion teamed up now with Jam Cortes with both scoring 15 points, more than enough since EAC had not a single player in double figures. In the summer Fil-Oil tournament, despite playing with an incomplete line-up Letran still came out on top, more than doubling the turnover points figure of the Generals, 32-13, on route to a 66-54 win.

CSJL Storyline : Safely ensconced in third place, the Knights will look to finish their first round on a high note, further securing their place in the standings. Though Letran has had their way with EAC in the past, that was without the reinforcement of ballhandlers Igee King and Joshua Torralba. While talented, they are still rookies, so that maybe something the Knights can take advantage of. 
Stat to Watch : Letran leads the league in second chance points with 12 a game, (tied with JRU and MIT), and is first in turnover points with an average of 19.71. While EAC is decent when it comes to preventing put-backs (just eight a game), they're the second-worst team when it comes to giving up turnover points, with 17.14 conceded in each encounter. That likely means easy points for the Knights.
Player to Watch : Jam Cortes will likely find himself matched up against Claude Cubo, a battle the shorter, but more athletic Cortes is likely to win. Cortes has been outstanding, norming a double-double of 11.7 points on 48 percent shooting and 11 rebounds. He'll likely look to assert his dominance down low against this EAC team.

EAC Storyline : EAC's win against the Altas puts them in good position, competing for the fourth spot in the seedings with CSB and LPU. That said, in their three wins, two came against bottom-feeders Arellano and Perpetual Help, though their win against Lyceum may come in handy down the road if quotient systems will need to be applied. EAC already struggled against one pressing team before, the JRU Heavy Bombers, who dealt them their first loss, so to keep moving forward, the Generals have to show that they've learned from that game, and now know how to take care of the ball.
Stat to Watch : EAC's penchant for taking jump shots has them drawing the least amount of fouls from their opponents in the league, just 19.14 a game. Teams that have beaten Letran have actually shown that if you can keep their big men Cortes and Jonathan Belorio on the bench with foul trouble, you have a better chance of winning. We'll see if guys like Jan Jamon and Torralba take heed of that advice and attack the rim.
Player to Watch : Jan Jamon's field goal percentage has gone down in the last three games when you'd think it'd go up what with all the doubleteams Joshua Torralba has been drawing. From a 16 point average on 53 percent shooting, he's now down to 14 points on 39 percent shooting, a whopping 14 percentage points drop. He'll find himself engaged in a scorers' duel with Kevin Alas in this game, but efficiency ought to be the name of his game, and not just plain chucking.

Prediction: CSJL Knights

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