The Jose Rizal University Heavy Bombers found their range in their last two minutes to whip the Lyceum of the Philippines Pirates, 63-57, on Friday in the 98th National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball tournament at the FilOil-EcoOil Arena in San Juan.
Marvin Dionisio, who led with 15 points and 10 rebounds, did some heavy lifting during the final period as JRU jumped to a share of the top spot with the College of St. Benilde Blazers with its sixth win in seven outings.
The 6’4” Dionisio hit five points, pulled off a rebound and foiled Lyceum’s final attempt in the remaining two minutes to help keep the Pirates at bay with their fifth consecutive victory.
Dionisio, who banged in 11 points in the fourth, stepped up after the Heavy Bombers forced a 56-all deadlock in the last 2:15 on Joshua Guiab’s putback.
A three-point play from Dionisio off Shaun Umali’s blocking foul, in the last 1:45, pushed JRU in front, 59-56.
After Umali split his free throws in the next play, William Sy’s rebound play in the 26.8 second mark sent JRU to a four-point edge off John Amores’ basket, 61-57.
Sy tallied 10 points and had eight rebounds for JRU, while Amores made eight points.
Dionisio’s two charities with 11 seconds left the finalized the count, sending the Pirates to second spot with their 5-2 win-loss slate.
“This game was a matter of playing as a unit, and playing together. Wala kaming problema sa aming tinatakbo. This is a game of streaks,” said JRU coach Louie Gonzales after JRU came back from 45-54 deficit in the last seven minutes.
Earlier, the San Beda Red Lions struck down the Arellano Chiefs, 96-61, to move up to third position with their 5-2 slate.
JB Bahio and James Kwekuteye scored 13 points for the Red Lions, who were never in trouble after posting a 29-9 first quarter advantage
“’Yung loss namin sa JRU was really a humbling experience for all of us,” said coach Yuri Escueta as the Lions’ bounced back from their 80-83 defeat to the Heavy Bombers last Tuesday.