MANILA — Mapua University’s huge second half propelled them to a victory over San Sebastian College-Recoletos.
The Cardinals hacked out an 80-70 win against the Golden Stags in the NCAA Season 99 Men’s Basketball Tournament earlier today at the FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan City.
Warren Bonifacio starred for Mapua with 16 points, eight rebounds, three steals, and an assist, while JC Recto and Clint Escamis poured in 15 and 12, respectively.
Escamis, who was a former NCAA Juniors MVP, also delivered seven assists and four steals in his return to Mapua after spending a season in the UAAP with the University of the East.
Only up 39-36 at the end of the first 20 minutes, the Intramuros-based squad tallied an 18-9 third quarter. This allowed them to turn a once 11-point deficit into a lead that grew by as much as 18, 72-54, after a bucket by Jopet Soriano with 3:03 remaining in the game.
The Golden Stags managed to make a late-game run as they were able to cut the lead to seven, 70-77, after a lay-in by Raymart Escubido with 37 ticks left. But Bonifacio closed the door on San Sebastian with a booming triple in the last 20 seconds of the game.
Meanwhile, leading San Sebastian were Rafael Are’s 18 points and Escobido’s 13 markers.
Mapua will try to post their second straight win when they face the 1-0 San Beda Red Lions on Friday, September 29, at 4:00 PM, while SSC-R hopes to finally get a win against the 0-1 Arellano Chiefs on Saturday, September 30, at 9:30 AM.
The two games are to be held at the same San Juan arena.
MAPUA 80- Bonifacio 16, Recto 15, Escamis 12, Hernandez 12, Sopriano 8, Cuenco 6, Rosillo 5, Dalisay 3, Asuncion 2, Bancale 1, Morenos 0, Fornis 0
SAN SEBASTIAN 70- Are 18, Ecobido 13, Calahat 10, Desoyo 9, Felebrico 6, Una 5, Gabat 4, de Leon 3, Shanoda 2, Sumoda 0, Gabat 0, Aguilar 0
Quarterscores: 12-18; 39-36; 57- 45; 80-70.