MANILA -- San Beda University appears to be peaking at the right time in the NCAA Season 99 men's basketball tournament, with Yukien Andrada serving as one of the catalysts for their resurgence.
Andrada averaged 20.0 points on an impressive 53.35% clip from beyond the arc while also grabbing 3.0 rebounds in two games from November 14-19, as the Red Lions cruised to back-to-back wins to re-enter the Final 4 race.
His efforts earned Andrada the nod as the Collegiate Press Corps NCAA Player of the Week presented by major sponsor San Miguel Corporation and backed by minor sponsors Discovery Suites and Jockey.
A product of San Beda's juniors program, Andrada edged out Lyceum’s Enoch Valdez and Perpetual’s Jielo Razon for the weekly honors deliberated by the print and online covering the beat.
After back-to-back losses to Perpetual Help and Mapua, the Red Lions bounced back with consecutive wins over fellow contenders in College of St. Benilde and Jose Rizal University. Against the Blazers, Andrada put up 22 points in a 65-61 win, and followed it up with an 18-point, 3-rebound, 2-steal outing in their 74-69 triumph against the Heavy Bombers.
"We talked about it for the past week ever since we lost to Mapua, sinasabi talaga namin na we still have control sa fate namin papunta sa Final Four. So, ‘yun nga, we’ll just focus on our game, one-by-one, and we will never give up," said Andrada.
The 22-year-old is also relieved to help out San Beda now that he is back at full strength after a nagging left hamstring strain back in Round 1.
"Sabi nga sa akin ni coach Yuri, yung ibang players sa ibang teams nagstep-up na eh, nagpe-peak na rin. So sinabihan na rin ako na, especially coming off an injury, na I have to step up na yung laro ko and hindi lang puro si Jacob [Cortez] or yung other teammates ko," said Andrada.
"I think it's the right time for me, and everything is peaking for me right now."