(Filoil EcoOil Centre)
12 p.m. — JRU vs San Beda
3 p.m. — UPHSD vs EAC
LYCEUM of the Philippines University (LPU) is for real.
Five straight victories including this massive one against defending champion Letran yesterday is proof of it.
Showing incredible resiliency and Mclaude Guadaña’s spectacular second-half performance, the Pirates dismantled a 19-point deficit in smashing the three-peat-seeking Letran Knights, 82-75, to reclaim their place at the helm in NCAA Season 98 at the Filoil EcoOil Centre.
Mr. Guadaña exploded with 15 of his game-best 20 points as he willed LPU to its fifth straight win — the longest streak this season — in six outings to rejoin College of St. Benilde on top.
It sent Letran stooping to its second straight defeat and third overall in as many triumphs.
The LPU fans seemed to have smelled what was forthcoming as they, headed by its school president Atty. Roberto P. Laurel and one of the Pirates best stars that wore the school uniform in CJ Perez, came in full force.
But it was excruciating to watch the Pirates at first as LPU was in total disarray in the opening quarter, missing shots that they usually make that got them in a big hole — a huge 19-point disadvantage early.
Mr. Guadaña and the Pirates though kept their belief that their shots would eventually fall.
“I knew we will come back strong in the second half and our shots will eventually fall,” said Mr. Guadaña.
Earlier, Arellano University outlasted Mapua, 64-59, to improve to 4-3.
Axel Doromal led all scorers with 16 points while Cade Flores did a yeoman’s job with 14 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, two steals and the same number of blocks before fouling out in the fourth quarter in powering back the Chiefs to contention.
It was another heartbreaking ending for the Cardinals, the runners up a season back, as they dropped to farther down to the bottom with a 0-7 slate that included a forfeiture loss to San Beda due to an ineligible player. — Joey Villar
Arellano 64 — Doromal 16, Flores 14, Menina 13, Talampas 7, Oftana 6, Tolentino 4, Abastillas 2, Oliva 2, Mallari 0, Mantua 0, Domingo 0
Mapua 59 — Hernandez 14, Gamboa 11, Nocum 10, Bonifacio 10, Pido 6, Agustin 4, Lacap 2, Parinas 2, Garcia 0, Soriano 0, Salenga 0
Quarterscores: 13-8; 27-26; 46-38; 64-59
LPU 82 — Guadaña 20, Barba 12, Montaño 12, Navarro 11, Larupay 9, Umali 7, Valdez 5, Culanay 3, Villegas 2, Peñafiel 1, Bravo 0, Aviles 0, Vinoya 0, Cunanan 0
Letran 75- Yu 18, Reyson 16, Caralipio 12, Santos 10, Monje 8, Olivario 6, Guarino 3, Miclat 2, Go 0, Bojorcelo 0, Bautista 0
Quarterscores: 13-29; 35-46; 61-60; 82-75