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SBC eyes 2nd win; Atoy Co debuts today

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SBC eyes 2nd win; Atoy Co debuts today

Post by Admin 18 on Mon Jun 24, 2013 5:43 am

Games Today (The Arena, San Juan)
4 p.m. – JRU vs Mapua
6 p.m. – Lyceum vs San Beda
Defending champion San Beda College tries to make it two in a row after a scary win in the opening day even as cage legend Atoy Co makes his coaching debut for Mapua in the 89th NCAA basketball tournament today at The Arena in San Juan.
The four-peat seeking Red Lions, who survived the ambush bid of host College of Saint Benilde, 71-70, clash with Lyceum in the second game at 6 p.m. while Co and the rest of the Cardinals face Jose Rizal University at 4 p.m.
Lefty power forward Art dela Cruz rescued his team from the jaws of defeat after scoring off an inbound pass with four seconds left, enabling debuting coach Boyet Fernandez to heave a big sigh of relief.
Fernandez is hoping his players won’t commit the same mistake against the Pirates, who he believes can give them another headache especially their starting backcourt.
“I saw their game on Filoil, they’ve been improving really well. (Dexter) Zamora has been scoring well, Shane Ko is dictating the ball game, they’re really a good team,” Fernandez said.
Fernandez, who has one PBA title to his credit, said the starting backcourt of Lyceum looks formidable with Zamora at the helm.
With his daredevil drives, Zamora can easily break the defense of any team, including San Beda – reason why Fernandez is wary of them.
Aside from being the team’s top playmaker, Ko is also known for his deadly shooting.
“This is a very tough NCAA season, lahat nagpalakas. It’s going to be tough for San Beda to repeat but pagtatrabahuhan namin,” Fernandez added.
The San Beda coach is hopeful to get big games from their frontline composed of Dela Cruz, Rome dela Rosa and Ola Adeogun who all delivered against Benilde.
But focus will be on Co, the flamboyant former Crispa ace who took over coaching duties from Chito Victolero last February.
One of the best shooters of his generation, Co hopes to hurdle his first test as coach, and for that to happen, he has to squeeze the best from athletic wingman Kenneth Ighalo and their frontline trio of Mark Braña, Jessie Saitanan and Joseph Eriobu.
“Ang team to beat, ay ang JRU. Kasi sila ang first game namin,” Co said in jest.
Eager to give him a rude welcome is another PBA legend in Vergel Meneses and his Heavy Bombers.
Though filled with rookies after the departure of their veterans including hotshot Nate Matute, the Heavy Bombers will a tough customer for the Cardinals as they’ll be led by veterans Michael Mabulac and Jed Salaveria, while rookie Paolo Pontejos and returnee Phillip Paniamogan are also be expected to create early impact for the Kalentong-based Bombers.

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