Pirates wallop Bombers, near outright finals entry

By Joey Villar

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MANILA, Philippines – Lyceum of the Philippines University destroyed Jose Rizal, 100-63, Friday to move on the verge of sweeping its way to the finals of the 93rd NCAA basketball tournament at the Filoil Arena in San Juan City.

CJ Perez dished out another MVP performance and sizzled with a game-high 24 points, eight rebounds, four assists and four steals to carry the Pirates to their 17th straight win, one short of completing an 18-game elimination round sweep that will catapult them straight to the finals where they will enjoy a thrice-to-beat edge.

LPU will need to hurdle San Beda, the defending champion, on Thursday to accomplish such historic feat.

“We staring at history and it staring back at us,” said LPU coach Topex Robinson, whose 17-win record this year matched the number of wins the school compiled the last three seasons that included 37 defeats in that same span.

But Robinson knows the last stumbling block will be their biggest test of all—San Beda.

“It will feel like a championship match,” he said.

Faced against a JRU team that is the league’s best in defense and whose average losing margin is 2.38 points, the Pirates just played its mechanical attacking game, and slowly but surely, mount run after run until the outcome was obvious.

The Bombers fell to 11-7.

It was total display of championship form for the Pirates as they mocked the defense put up by the Bombers, the league’s best in that department.

The scores:

LPU 100 – Perez 24, Pretta 9, Tansingco 9, Caduyac 8, Marcelino JC 8, Santos 8, Marata 8, Marcelino JV 6, Serrano 6, Ayaay 4, Nzeusseu 4, Ibanez 4, Liwa 2, Baltazar 0, Cinco 0

JRU 63 – Castor 12, Teodoro 11, Dela Virgen 10, Poutouochi 8, Mendoza 8, Sibangan 4, Mariano 4, Grospe 4, Abdul Razak 2, Mate 0, Sawat 0, Pontejos 0, Bordon 0, Lasquety 0, David 0

Quarterscores: 24-18, 42-34, 68-53, 100-63

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