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San Beda faces EAC while Mapua battles Altas in NCAA Season 98 basketball tournament

SAN BEDA tries to find the way back to NCAA Final Four. — NCAA/GMA-SYNERGY

Games Today(Filoil EcoOil Centre)12 p.m. — UPHSD vs Mapua3 p.m. — San Beda vs EAC

SAN Beda tries to find its way back to Final Four contention as it tangles with Emilio Aguinaldo College (EAC) today in the 98th NCAA basketball tournament at the Filoil EcoOil Centre.

The Lions were kicked out of the magic four and placed in danger of missing the semis for the first time in almost decades after absorbing a painful 75-72 overtime defeat to the University of Perpetual Help (UPHSD) Altas last Saturday for the former’s fourth defeat against six wins.

While a win for San Beda over EAC in its 3 p.m. encounter would not be enough to catapult it back to the top four, at least it would shoved them closer to reclaiming its place there.

The Generals, currently at the bottom with a 1-11 mark, though vowed to give the Lions a run for their money.

“Our mentality is to play for a win always regardless of the situation and condition,” said EAC coach Oliver Bunyi.

The Altas, meanwhile, hope to ride the crest of their giant-sized win over the Lions as they square off with the Mapua Cardinals, who are also coming off a 77-67 triumph over the Generals, 77-67, Sunday, at 12 p.m.

UPHSD relied on Cedrick Abis, Carlo Ferreras and Mark Omega in filling the huge Kim Aurin void the last time out and the Las Pinas-based school is pinning it hopes to replicate such efforts.

The status of Mr. Aurin, suspended due to violation of team rules, is not known but he would also be needed if the Altas, who are still clinging on to hope of snaring a spot in the Final Four with a 5-6 mark, wants to stay in the race.

“I’m confident of my players that they would be ready if their numbers would be called,” said UPHSD mentor Myk Saguiguit.

Truly, Messrs. Abis, Ferreras and Omega answered the call in the last game.

Mr. Abis fired a team-high 21 points including four crucial charities while Mr. Ferreras had 17 points and eight boards and Mr. Omega had nine points and a season-high 22 caroms. — Joey Villar

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