Occupying the bottom part of the NCAA standings, these two teams split their season series last year. In the first round, CSB got a 25-11 turnover point advantage, but EAC managed to endure, thanks to Milan Vargas' 17 points, as the Generals survived for a 76-71 win. Game two though saw CSB score their season-high, 83 points, as they turned in a 19-10 second quarter and a 31-16 final period as they blew out EAC and their 64 point output. These two met again in the Fil-Oil tournament, with Franz Chiong out-dueling Carlo Lastimosa 22-16, as EAC kept CSB winless, 88-75.
What's at Stake:
- Both teams stand at 3-5, and a win ties the victor with Lyceum, and possibly JRU if they can beat CSL on Friday, for the fourth spot in the standings. The loser sinks into a tie with Mapua, and Arellano, if the Chiefs can dispatch the Perpetual Help Altas.
EAC Player to Watch : Rookie forward Jolas Paguia has been up and down, after a brilliant first outing against the Chiefs, but with the other bigs in foul trouble against Letran, Paguia took advantage of the increased minutes and scored 16 points, including going 4 of 6 from beyond the arc, plus he had five rebounds, two steals and three blocks in 31 minutes off the bench. Size and speedwise, he's a good match for someone like Mark Romero or Jan Tan, shooty big men who won't try to post you up.
CSB Stat to Watch : The Chiefs held Carlo Lastimosa to a career-low four points and four turnovers last week, as last season's rookie of the year seemed mildly passive, attempting just six shots. Odds are he'll look to have a huge bounce-back in this game. Even if he doesn't score, head coach Richard Del Rosario could use him as a decoy to set up other guys, especially if EAC builds their defense exclusively to stop him.
Prediction: CSB Blazers