NCAA Update: Cortez Leads San Beda to Victory Over St. Benilde


NCAA Update: Cortez Leads San Beda to Victory Over St. Benilde

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Jacob Cortez and the San Beda Red Lions were scorching the nets from long-range as they secured an 83-77 victory over the College of St. Benilde in the NCAA Season 99 men’s basketball tournament. This thrilling showdown unfolded on a Sunday afternoon at the FilOil EcoOil Center in San Juan.

Cortez displayed his sharpshooting skills, sinking four three-pointers on his way to accumulating 20 points. He also contributed six rebounds and three assists to his team’s triumph. In a collective effort, the Red Lions converted an impressive 16 of their 36 attempts from beyond the three-point arc.

While the Red Lions held a commanding 20-point lead at one juncture, they had to muster crucial plays down the stretch to stave off the relentless challenge posed by the Blazers. Miguel Oczon and Miggy Corteza led the Blazers’ comeback effort. Following this victory, San Beda improved its tournament record to 2-1, while St. Benilde dropped to 1-2.

Yukien Andrada came up clutch with a three-pointer, extending San Beda’s advantage to 82-74 with just 1:35 remaining. However, Corteza’s layup and an Oczon three-pointer narrowed the gap to just five points, 82-77, with a minute left on the clock. The Blazers’ hopes dwindled as a pass by Robi Nayve to Will Gozum was disrupted by Cortez, and Ray Carlos missed a crucial layup in the closing seconds.

Andrade contributed 15 points for the Red Lions, displaying his own prowess from beyond the arc by making three of four attempts. James Payosing rounded out the double-digit scorers for San Beda with 13 points.

On the opposing side, Oczon notched 15 points for St. Benilde, while Gozum recorded a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds. The Blazers struggled with their long-distance shooting, managing to connect on only 5 of 26 attempts.

In a preceding matchup, Emilio Aguinaldo College handed defending champion Letran its third consecutive defeat with a final score of 75-65. King Gurtiza led the charge for EAC, pouring in 23 points on an efficient 9-of-14 shooting performance. JP Maguliano also contributed significantly with a double-double, amassing 14 points and 11 rebounds.

Deo Cuajao was the top scorer for the Knights, registering 12 points, but they had a challenging day, shooting at a subpar 35.8% from the field.

Jose Rizal University dealt Mapua University its first loss of the season, prevailing with a final score of 70-61. Patrick Ramos was the standout performer for JRU, delivering an impressive 18-point, 9-rebound performance.


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