WHEN his ace was shelved with an injury, San Beda coach Jamike Jarin turned to his other cards on the deck to step up for injured team captain Dan Sara.
Fortunately for Jarin, Ranbil Tongco and Amiel Soberano delivered in the absence of Sara, who will be sidelined for two to three games with a fractured finger sustained in a team practice during the 10-day break.
Tongco and Soberano joined forces in the second half when the Red Lions turned Tuesday's game against the EAC Generals into a blowout.
Tongco fired 22 points and Soberano added 21 in leading the Red Lions to a one-sided 91-76 victory in the NCAA Season 92 men's basketball tournament.
For Tongco, he was just doing his job as co-captain.
"That's why I'm co-captain: If the captain is not around, you need to be the leader on the team," said Tongco, after San Beda joined Mapua Cardinals on top with a 3-0 card.
Soberano, meanwhile, broke out of a slump and credited his teammates for his stellar performance.
"Credit sa teammates ko kasi kahit off ako first two games pero naniwala pa rin sila sa akin. Sila nagbigay ng kumpyansa sa akin," he said.
Both players also combined for 7-of-14 from the three-point area, earning the praise of Jarin.
The San Beda coach also noted the team's defense as a big factor for their victory.
"They shot well today that's why we were able to escape EAC. I'm happy for them," said Jarin. "But you also have to give credit to the team's defense."