San Beda drubs Letran for 17th NCAA crown-A A +A
Friday, October 26, 2012
MANILA -- San Beda College punished Letran for four quarters, 67-39, to close out the 88th NCAA men's basketball tournament as champions for the third consecutive year Friday before an overflow crowd at the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.
Completing a date with history, the Red Lions have also emerged as the most successful squad in the 10-team field with 17 diadems, incidentally nosing out the Knights for the recognition.
"It all boiled down to the desire and composure of the boys. I was expecting a neck-and-neck battle and we’re going to fight until the last second," rookie mentor Ronnie Magsanoc told reporters.
San Beda, which endured a series tying 64-55 setback on October 20, dictated the tempo in Game 3 as Letran failed to recover in the payoff period. So lopsided that the Knights suffered a 31-point deficit with 3:29 left after Baser Amer and graduating guard Anjo Caram fired back-to-back triples to make it 62-31.
Amer, who was later adjudged as Finals MVP for norming 14.3 points per game, said he had a hard time falling asleep prior to Friday's game.
"I guess I'm just too excited. We worked hard for this and I'm very thankful that we’re able to get through," said the 20-year-old sophomore.
Caram posted a game-high 17 points while Amer and Ola Adeogun added 14 and 10 markers, respectively, for San Beda, which registered its sixth championship in the last seven years.
Still keeping a smile after the humbling defeat, Letran coach Louie Alas apologized to the blue and red community.
"I think our championship inexperience cost us the game. I'm sorry. We tried but we came up short," he said.
Letran last entered the finals in 2007 but they were bested by the same squad as well.
In the same briefing, Alas announced his decision to leave the Catholic institution, which he steered to titles in 1998, 2003 and 2005.
"I want to take a rest. It's irrevocable. It's time to move on. I had already told my players about this," he said, adding his assistant coaches are more than capable to handle the job.
Mark Cruz had 12 points while Kevin Alas and Jam Cortes combined for 17 markers for the Knights, whose lousy offensive was highlighted by a listless output from the three-point area after 18 attempts.
San Beda (67)—Caram 17, Amer 14, J.Pascual 10, Adeogun 6, dela Rosa 5, Koga 4, K.Pascual 4, Abarcar 2, Ludovice 2, Mendoza 2, dela Cruz 1, Villaruz 0, Bonsubre 0, Moralde 0, Lim 0.
Letran (39)—Cruz 12, K.Alas 11, Cortes 6, Racal 3, Almazan 3, Almario 2, Alas J. 2, Luib 0, Lituania 0, Gabawan 0, Cudal 0, Belorio 0.
Quarterscores: 18-10, 34-17, 45-25, 67-39.