JOHN Pinto scored nine of Arellano’s 11 points in the fourth and dished out an assist that led to the go-ahead basket as the Chiefs shocked NCAA champion San Beda, 67-66, on Wednesday in the Filoil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup at The Arena in San Juan.
The Chiefs racked up six straight points after they trailed, 64-61. Pinto scored off an offensive rebound then passed to John Bangga for a three-point play with 1:51 left in the fourth period.
Bangga missed the bonus free throw but Pinto delivered once again, converting a long jumper to make it 67-64, with 1:04 remaining.
Baser Amer buried a jumper to cut San Beda’s deficit to one point. But the Red Lions failed to take advantage of two missed free throws by James Forrester with 5.4 seconds left in the fourth as Art Dela Cruz’s heave from midcourt came after the buzzer.
Pinto finished the game with a team-high 17 points as the Chiefs earned their fifth victory in seven outings and, more importantly, made a big impression ahead of their NCAA campaign.
“Ang motivation namin going into the game is to make a statement, whatever happens,” said Arellano coach Koy Banal. “The sad part is that we won over San Beda by just one point, now everybody will be ready for us.”
“If you are going to look at it very carefully, tsamba ’yung (panalo) pero ang reminder ko sa kanila, ‘you made it happen so you have to be ready for what’s to come,’” said Banal.
Arellano climbed to second place in Group A and moved closer to clinching a quarterfinal berth. Meanwhile, San Beda slipped to 3-2 and joined Adamson in third spot.
James Forrester also added 11 points for the Chiefs.
Rome Dela Rosa chipped in 14 points and eight rebounds for the Red Lions. Amer added 13 markers.
Arellano (67) – Pinto 17, Forrester 11, Hernandez 6, Salcedo 6, Bangga 6, Enriquez 6, Jalalon 5, Cadavis 4, Caperal 2, Agovida 2, Margallo 2, Nicholls 0.
San Beda (66) – Dela Rosa 14, Amer 13, Pascual 8, Adeogun 8, Abarcar 8, A. Semerad 7, Koga 4, Dela Cruz 2, Ludovice 2, D. Semerad 0, Abatayo 0, Villaruz 0, Mendoza 0.
Quarterscores: 21-20; 35-35; 56-54; 67-66.