Saints on cloud nine

September 26, 2018

FIVE down,  two to go for defending champion  St. Clare College-Caloocan.

The Saints drew superb games from Junjie Hallare and import Mohamed Pare to scuttle Rizal Technological University, 83-59, and claim  their  fifth   straight win in the NAASCU Season 18  men’s basketball  tournament at  the RTU gym.

Hallare  finished with 19 points and 10 rebounds and Pare added 18 points and 15 rebounds for the Caloocan City-based team of NAASCU founding president  Dr. Ernesto Jay Adalem  and  multi-titled coach  Jino Manansala.

So dominant were the Saints that they  outscored the Blue Thunder in al  four periods highlighted by a 16-0 opening salvo that took the fight out of  the  Blue Thunder and silenced the  pro-RTU home crowd.

Jhondel Flores and Philip Redondo paced  RTU with 15 and 10 points, respectively.

Before  beating  RTU, St. Clare also won over Enderun Colleges (96-72), Philippine  Merchant  Marine School (81-76 ),  Holy Angel University (119-60)  and   newcomer National  Teachers College  (133-57).

The  Saints’ average  winning  margin  of 37.6  points in  their  first  five games is  considered as one of the  biggest in  the   league’s 18-year history so far.

St. Clare’s  remaining two assignments in the elimination round are  City University of Pasay on Sept. 27 and Our Lady of Fatima University on Oct. 1.

The 15 participating  senior teams are divided into two groups with the two best teams in Group A and B advancing to the quarterfinals outright with twice to beat advantage.

The teams which  placed third to sixth will go through a knockout crossover  round  against teams from the opposite group to determine the remaining  four quarterfinalists.

The best-of-three semifinals and finals will follow

The scores:

St. Clare  (83) --  Hallare 19, Pare 18, Santos 9, de Leon 7, Fontanilla 7, Fuentes 5, Penaredondo 4, Palencia 4, Catura 3, Junsay 2, Rebugio 2, Joven 2, Rubio 1, Tecson 0, Decano 0.

RTU (59) --  Flores 15, Redondo 10, Estoce 6, Asuncion 6, Laman 6, Sienes 5, Torre 5, Flor 2, Tilos 2, Teofilo 2, Ronquillo 0, Reyes 0, Banaag 0, Calapine 0, Guting 0, Casitas 0.

Quarterscores: 24-10, 46-30, 67-44, 83-59.