San Beda College overpowered Arellano University en route to a 91-81 win to force a playoff for the top seed in the 92nd NCAA Final Four at The Arena in San Juan City.
Jayvee Mocon fired 19 points and claimed 15 rebounds for the Red Lions.
Davon Potts and AC Soberano chipped in 18 and 15 points, respectively, as San Beda ended up tied at No. 1 with Arellano on 14-4 win-loss records.
Both San Beda and Arellano are already assured of a twice-to-beat bonus, but Lions are hoping to claim the top spot in the semis for the 11th straight season.
“We’ll play our hearts out every game. We don’t want to disrespect the game,” said coach Jamike Jarin in an interview with ABS-CBN Sports.
The Lions are ahead for most part of the game, but the Chiefs rallied their way within five points midway the payoff period.
It was at this point when Mocon and Potts partnered for a 10-5 windup against Arellano.
Kent Salado and Lervin Flores scored 13 points each, while Jio Jalalon had 14.
The two will play again on Tuesday at the same venue for the top seeding.
For the Lions, it will be about keeping the tradition after reigning as No. 1 at the end of the elimination in the last 10 years.
"I heard it’s the school tradition," said San Beda coach Jamike Jarin.
San Beda 91 – Mocon 19, Potts 18, Soberano 15, Adamos 12, Bolick 7, Tongco 7, Sara 3, Noah 3, Presbitero 3, Oftana 2, Bahio 2, Bonsubre 0, Carlos 0, Navarro 0
Arellano 81 – Jalalon 14, Salado 13, Flores 13, Gumaru 11, Nicholls 10, Meca 7, Cadavis 6, Enriquez 3, Holts 2, Canete 2, Villoria 0, Aguilar 0, Zamora 0
Quarterscores: 27-24, 47-42, 75-62, 91-81
For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.