Benilde stays undefeated, Mapua starts a winning streak

The CSB Blazers continue their hot start in Season 95. They put away the Arellano Chiefs, 82-77 for their fifth straight win of the season. The Chiefs fall to 1-6 for the season.

Clement Leutcheu led the way with 13 points and seven rebounds. Justin Gutang returned from a knee injury to add 12 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Yankie Haruna and James Pasturan added 11 and 10 respectively. Justin Arana paced Arellano with 25 big points.

The Blazers needed a spark from Leutcheu as well as a big defensive stop to hold off the Chiefs.

Leutcheu scored on a buzzer-beating fadeaway jumper to end the first half, putting Benilde up by one. That sparked a run by the rest of the team to open the third quarter. The Blazers teamed up for a 10-4 run to put some separation between them and the Chiefs. They held on to an eight-point lead heading into the final period.

Benilde held on to the safe lead for most of the quarter. But in the final moments Arellano tried to make one last-gasp run. They were able to cut the lead to five and had the ball with under 20 seconds to go. But Unique Naboa came away with a clutch steal to secure the win.

In the first game of the day, the Mapua Cardinals built momentum off their first win of the season, earning their second straight win. They bullied the EAC Generals, 76-66 to rise up to 2-5. EAC stays at the bottom with a 1-6 record.

Rookies Cyril Gonzales and Paolo Hernandez played big to lead Mapua. Gonzales scored 13 points on 50% shooting while Hernandez scored 11 on a 57% clip. Laurenz Victoria added 10 points, with most coming during a crucial third quarter run. JC Luciano scored 12 to lead EAC.

The game was tight until midway through the third period. From an eight-point deficit, the Generals fought their way back to open the second half and got to within one point.

That was when Victoria led a 21-0 run that effectively put the game away. The Cardinals best scorer put up seven points to lead the way during that stretch. Gonzales, Noah Lugo and Justin Serrano combined for 12 points during the third quarter as well.

When the smoke cleared, Mapua outscored EAC, 25-12 in the third period and took a 21-point lead heading to the final period. They cruised to the win at that point.

NCAA File Photos