Last season’s runner-up Mapua posted its first winning streak of the season with a 62-59 decision over Lyceum of the Philippines University in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament at the Filoil EcoOil Centre Sunday.
Trailing, 42-48, after three quarters, the Cardinals flipped the switch in the payoff period behind JJ Pido, Paolo Hernandez and Warren Bonifacio to open their second-round campaign on a high note.
Still way behind in the Final Four race with a 2-8 record, Mapua is just taking things step by step with eight games left in the eliminations.
“Pinaka-motivation talaga namin huwag nang lumayo pa, huwag nang tumingin sa standing namin. Iyon na lang,” said Cardinals coach Randy Alcantara.
“Gawin na lang mga assignments namin. Hindi talaga madali ang season ngayon, pahirapan ang panalo,” he added.
The Pirates fell to a 7-3 record.
Pido led Mapua with 11 points and two assists, while Warren Bonifacio had a double-double outing of 10 points and 14 rebounds. Rence Nocum and Joaqui Garcia also scored 10 markers.
Mac Guadaña was the lone bright spot for LPU with 15 points, three assists and three rebounds.
Mapua (62)—Pido 11, Nocum 10, Bonifacio 10, Garcia 10, Hernandez 7, Mercado 4, Soriano 4, Cuenco 2, Parinas 2, Agustin 2, Salenga 0, Igliane 0, Lacap 0.
LPU (59)—Guadaña 15, Larupay 8, Umali 7, Bravo 6, Cunanan 6, Barba 4, Navarro 4, Montaño 4, Villegas 3, Valdez 2, Peñafiel 0, Omandac 0.
Quarterscores: 12-18, 30-29, 42-48.
(Filoil EcoOil Centre)
12 noon – San Beda vs Arellano
3 p.m. – Letran vs Perpetual