MANILA -- Emilio Aguinaldo College is off to a victorious start in the NCAA Season 99 basketball tournament after taking down Perpetual Help, 75-67, on Wednesday at the FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.
It is a good sign for the Generals, who finished with a 3-15 record last year that put them at the bottom of the league standings. They also gave new coach Jerson Cabiltes a triumphant welcome to the NCAA after he took over from Oliver Bunyi in the offseason.
JP Maguliano led the way as EAC's new captain, putting up 24 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two blocks, while draining three of four attempts from long range.
"Bago pa lang kami umalis ng EAC, sinabi na ni coach na hindi tayo nag ensayo ng eight months para lang matalo, dun kami kumuha ng mindset to win," said Maguliano.
Maguliano knocked down a three-pointer that sparked a 12-0 run for EAC, shattering a 57-all deadlock midway in the final quarter. Ralph Robin scored nine points in the scoring onslaught that sealed the deal for the Generals.
"Last year na rin niya," Cabiltes said of Robin. "Medyo crucial three-point shots n'ya that gave us a good lead."
Perpetual Help played without its ace in Gelo Razon, who served a one-game suspension from unsportsmanlike behavior in their final game last season.
EAC 75- Maguliano 24, Robin 12, Cosejo 10, Ochavo 8, Gurtiza 5, Umpad 4, Dominguez 3, Cosa 3, Quinal 3, Bacud 2, Luciano 1, Balowa 0, Tolentino 0, Angeles 0, Ednilag 0
UPHSD 67- Ferreras 16, Nitura 11, Pagaran 8, Omega 7, Roque 6, Abis 6, Boral 5, Orgo 4, Cuevas 2, Gelsano 2, Barcuma 0, Nunez 0, Sevilla 0, Movida 0, Ramirez 0
Quarterscores: 21-16; 43-30; 57-53; 75-67