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Player of the Game : Yousef Taha nearly missed a triple-double, finishing with 17 points, 15 rebounds...and 9 turnovers. The 6'7" Fil-Palestinian also needed 15 field goal attempts and 8 free throws to get to his 17 points in a bit of a mixed bag of a game. Taha got 8 of those 17 in the fourth quarter, when the Cardinals needed it the most, but then maybe the deficit they had to cut into wouldn't be as big if there were less miscues from the big guy? Something to ponder on for the MIT coaching staff, to be sure.
MIT Stat to Watch : The Arellano Chiefs got a good night from their defense, getting Mapua to make just 4 of 13 triples (31%) and 26 of 58 field goals overall (45%), both numbers down from what they normally concede, 37.86% on triples, and 48.55% on field goals, thus explaining why the deficit was so close.
MIT Player to Watch : See above, for more on Yousef Taha
AU Stat to Watch : Compared to the average of 23.4 assists the Chiefs entered the game surrendering, Mapua had just a measly 14 extra passes before the shot. Part of the reason why also is because the Chiefs did not zone as much, and in fact, pressed quite a bit, probably causing some confusion among the Cardinals.
AU Player to Watch : Vergel Zulueta had a decent game, scoring 15 on 7 of 15 shooting, plus four assists. It's just a bit disappointing that he didn't step up more, given how Andrian Celada fell into foul trouble. He also turned the ball over five times.
- Arellano got a whopping 29 turnover points on 21 Mapua turnovers, plus 19 fastbreak points.
- On the flipside though, the Chiefs pulled down just 22 rebounds, compared to 46 by Mapua, a huge difference, owing to a 16 to 5 offensive rebound advantage.
- Allan Mangahas played just a total of 14 minutes in the game, one more than Jumel Chien.
SBC 77 - CSJL 62
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Player of the Game : In a game that was decided by defense and extra possessions, Jake Pascual stands out for hauling down 11 rebounds, 6 offensive, and blocking 4 shots, more than making up for a 2 of 9 shooting performance.
SBC Stat to Watch : San Beda managed to get out and run 16 times, scoring 14 points in the process. Turnover points were another thing though, as they got just 8, while allowing 22 from Letran.
SBC Player to Watch : With all of San Beda's big men splitting minutes, overwhelming Jam Cortes and Jonathan Belorio, Dave Marcelo managed to score 12 points in 19 minutes, on 3 of 5 shooting, plus a perfect 6 for 6 stint at the foul line. He also pulled down 5 rebounds and had 2 assists and a block, but turned it over 3 times.
CSJL Stat to Watch : Off 17 turnovers, Letran was able to get 22 turnover points, a huge factor in (nearly) keeping in step with the Red Lions. The problem was fast break points, as the Knights finished with just six attempts, and got only two points out of them.
CSJL Player to Watch : Kevin Alas has made big strides in his playmaking and shot selection this season, but that was not evident in this game, as Alas forced up a ton of bad shots while under extreme duress to score, especially towards the end. Alas did manage 20 points, but he needed 21 attempts to get there. He also turned the ball over 6 times, to go with his 7 rebounds and 6 assists. Overall, you want better decision-making from Alas, but when you're the only guy who can put the ball in the basket some slack has to be given to you. That said, when he hit those back to back triples in the third quarter, I actually felt that was a bad thing, as it meant he would be encouraged to try to hit more of them. Turns out he finished 3 for 13 from downtown.
- Alas wasn't the only one heaving up bricks out there. VJ Espiritu took 7 triple attempts and made just 1 of them, despite getting some clean, open looks
- The Red Lions showed a ton of restraint, attempting only 7 triples as a team, making 4 of them. Instead, they often decided to take it inside, which helped by causing foul trouble on the bigs of Letran.
NCAA Picking Record: 20-9