ART de la Cruz scored 29 points to power the San Beda Red Lions to an 88-69 rout of Jose Rizal University on Thursday for their fourth straight win in the NCAA Season 91 seniors basketball tournament at The Arena in San Juan.
De la Cruz also had six rebounds, nine assists, and four steals as the Red Lions overpowered the league’s best defensive team and tightened their grip on second place with a 6-1 win-loss slate behind unbeaten Letran.
Before the match, JRU had been allowing its rivals just an average of 64.33 points.
“They will make you get out of your set plays and make you decide on bad decisions. It’s a very defensive oriented team but we were able to get the stops, got our bearings, and get the lead again and settle,” said San Beda coach Jamike Jarin.
Roldan Sara had 17 points, while Ola Adeogun had 16 points and eight rebounds for the Red Lions, who limited JRU star Tey Teodoro to only three points in the second half.
“Defense lang talaga ang focus ni coach,” said De la Cruz. “Pero ’yung offense namin, maganda ang tinatakbo.”
Teodoro had 16 points while Jordan de la Paz had 15 points for the Heavy Bombers, who had their three-game winning streak snapped to drop to a 4-3 win-loss slate.
San Beda (88)—Dela Cruz 29, Sara 17, Adeogun 16, Koga 7, Tongco 7, Sorela 7, Soberano 3, Tankoua 2, Cabanag 0, Reyes 0, Mocon 0, Bonsubre 0, Presbitero 0, Sedillo 0.
JRU (69)—Teodoro 16, Dela Paz 15, Pontejos 9, Poutouochi 8, Abdul Wahab 8, Lasquety 4, Dela Virgen 3, Aurin 2, Balagtas 2, Grospe 2, Sanchez 0, Cruz 0, Estrella 0.
Quarterscores: 20-15; 39-33; 58-54; 88-69.