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    Dela Rosa-Dela Cruz connection strikes again as Red Lions turn back Stags

    Sep 30, 2013

    Rome dela Rosa and Art dela Cruz switched roles this time in leading San Beda to a come-from-behind 72-68 victory over San Sebastian in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament at The Arena in San Juan.

    Dishing to Dela Cruz in two game-winning plays this season, Dela Rosa was at the receiving end this time as he scored the marginal basket that completed the mighty comeback from a double-digit deficit and gained for the league-leading Lions further separation from the pack with a 13th win in 15 games.

    The fourth-running Stags, on the other hand, dropped to an 8-6 win-loss card that kept the other teams behind alive in the playoff race.

    The Lions erased a 15-point deficit entering fourth quarter and gained their first lead after Dela Cruz saw Dela Rosa, who scored on the undergoal stab to make it 69-68 with only 56.4 seconds left.

    “He returned the favor,” Dela Rosa said of Dela Cruz. “Art has been big for us. I just trust the guy and I know what he’s capable of.”

    In all, Dela Rosa, the Lions’ skipper, fired 11 of his 18 points in the payoff period,

    Ola Adeogun also proved to be a major factor in the comeback, scoring 11 of his 26 points in the final frame, on top of 17 rebounds and three blocks in a performance that helped the Lions negate a lethargic start that saw them trail by 10 points in the first quarter.

    “We started flat, but in the second half we stepped up,” Lions coach Boyet Fernandez said.

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    San Sebastian rookie Bradwyn Guinto returned from a three-game absence due to typhoid fever and had a golden chance to regain the lead, but missed a reverse layup over Adeogun.

    CJ Perez, averaging 23.5 points and 11 boards in his last two games, was limited to seven points and four rebounds, and committed a crucial turnover off a bad pass that could’ve also regained for the Stags the cushion.


    The scores:

    SBC (72) – Adeogun 26, Dela Rosa 18, Amer 12, Dela Cruz 6, Koga 5, Abarcar 2, Pascual 2, Sara 1, A. Semerad 0, Mendoza 0, D. Semerad 0, Ludovice 0

    SSC (68) – Ortuoste 15, Dela Cruz 9, De Vera 8, Perez 7, Gusi 6, Trinidad 6, Guinto 5, Aquino 4, Tano 4, Rebollos 3, Balucanag 1

    Quarterscores: 13-23, 29-37, 46-61, 72-68

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