OLIVAREZ College extended its winning streak to three games after defeating Lyceum-Batangas, 91-87, even as Technological Institute of the Philippines got back on the winning track in the Universities and Colleges Basketball League (UCBL) Season 2 at the Olivarez College gym in Sucat, Parañaque City.
Richmond Sunga shone offensively with 17 points but it was Joshua Almajeda who made the big difference for the Sea Lions who improved to 5-3 at the start of the second round elims.
The energetic Almajeda came through with two defensive stops at the crunch as the Sea Lions dodged the upset bid of the Pirates.
“A win is a win but I’m not satisfied with their performance,” said Olivarez College coach Mike Saguiguit after the Sea Lions squandered an early 19-point lead.
Rommel Saliente, who posted the league’s first-ever triple-double the last time out, led the Lyceum’s mighty fightback that threatened the Sea Lions.
A jumper by Jay Villaluna put the Pirates on top at 82-80 with more than three minutes to play, but Sunga, Vin Begaso and Dwight Saguiguit countered back with their own big shots before Almajeda frustrated the Pirates with two key steals in the last 20 seconds.
Lyceum-Batangas dropped to 2-6.
Earlier, the TIP Engineers exacted sweet revenge over the University of Batangas Brahmans with a 72-55 win, snapping a two-game skid for a 3-5 record.
Veteran Jorey Napoles accounted for 15 points and 10 rebounds while John Palisoc had 14 points off the bench to help the Engineers avenge a stunning 79-77 loss dealt by the Brahmans in their initial meeting last Sept. 30.
TIP 72 — Napoles 15, Palisoc 14, Ramos 11, Quiambao 9, Daguro 7, Latu 6, Soriano 6, Lara 2, Mallari 2, Manalang 0.
UB 55 — Yemeli 15, Arcilla 10, Alade 7, Tabol 6, Gabriel 4, Castro 3, Villegas 3, Cervantes 2, Gotam 2, Heidelburg 2, Espiritu 1, Clarion 0.
Quarters: 18-15, 35-22, 53-37, 72-55.
OLIVAREZ COLLEGE 91 — Sunga 17, Castro 14, Saguiguit 13, Navarro 9, Prado 9, Begaso 8, Geronimo 6, Lalata 6, Almajeda 3, Elie 2, Maganga 2.
LYCEUM-BATANGAS 87 — Saliente 25, Buen 20, Fernandez 14, Axalan 12, Villaluna 10, Lapasaran 4, Villanueva 2, Solitario 0.
Quarters: 27-15, 54-41, 70-66, 91-87.
Games on Thursday
(Olivarez College gym)
12 noon – BulSU vs Diliman College
2 p.m. – U of Batangas vs CEU