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    Fernandez cautions San Beda not to be complacent after OT win over Mapua

    May 9, 2022
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    Coach Boyet Fernandez tells the Lions they are miles away from the goal.
    PHOTO: Marlo Cueto

    THIS is no time to celebrate for San Beda after it managed to live for another day and stay very much in contention for a finals berth in the NCAA Season 97 men’s basketball tournament.

    Coach Boyet Fernandez tempered the expectations of the Red Lions in the aftermath of their 73-67 come-from-behind victory against Mapua in overtime on Sunday at the Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

    See Resolute San Beda rallying behind ‘Walang uuwi!’ battle cry

    Fernandez reminded his team they’re still miles away from achieving their ultimate goal of regaining the men’s basketball championship in the country’s oldest collegiate league.

    “We just tied them,” said Fernandez. “It gave us another chance to live.”

    The second seeded Cardinals own a twice-to-beat advantage against the No. 3 Red Lions.

    The sudden-death game is set on Wednesday with the right to meet defending champion Letran in the best-of-three title series at stake.

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    San Beda Red Lions celebrateSan Beda forces a decider against Mapua.

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    The Red Lions, who lost to the Knights in their 2019 title showdown, were held to just eight points in the third period.

    But showing the poise and confidence that made them the most dominant team in the league in the last decade, the Red Lions willed their way back and forced the extra period, before uncorking a 7-0 run in overtime that broke the backs of the Cardinals.

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    “I’m proud of my players. Even though we’re down they never gave up, and that’s the character we really want to do,” said Fernandez of his team’s comeback effort.

    Again, he reminded the Red Lions the victory is just the beginning of what is an expected bumpy road on the way to the championship.

    “Masarap because we won this one, but it’s not yet over. We just tied them, that’s what I have always been saying to the players. We all know Mapua is a very strong team, has a very good coaching staff. So we look forward to Wednesday’s game,” said Fernandez.

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    Coach Boyet Fernandez tells the Lions they are miles away from the goal.
    PHOTO: Marlo Cueto
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