Arellano brushes off EAC to stay in race for Final Four berth

MANILA, Philippines – After pulling off a lopsided triumph over reigning 5-peat champion San Beda College last week, Arellano University authored another remarkable win by defeating Emilio Aguinaldo College, 98-90, on Tuesday, October 6, at the Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan City.

Jiovani Jalalon finished Arellano's last outing in the NCAA Season 91 elimination phase with his fourth triple-double performance, registering 31 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists to help the Chiefs secure at least a playoff for a Final Four slot with a 12-6 record.

Jalalon also scored 9 points for Arellano down the stretch to secure the victory as the Generals managed to put themselves within striking distance in the final frame. 

Although Arellano was bannering a 59-40 leverage in the early proceedings of the third canto, EAC found its groove by the fourth period courtesy of the combined efforts from Francis Munsayac, Jozhua General, Sidney Onwubere and Laminou Hamadou.

"We lost our rhythm in the fourth quarter, but I am glad we managed to pick up our pace again in the last minutes of play," Arellano head coach Jerry Codiñera stated in the post-game interview.

Munsayac drilled in a three-pointer and long two, while General nailed his own triple and converted two of his 3 charities. 

In addition, Onwubere and Hamadou muscled their way in the shaded lane to cut the Arellano lead to 3, 90-93.

Arellano relied on Jalalon, who had a personal 9-0 run that started from back-to-back fastbreak layups. With 33.2 seconds left, Jalalon hammered the final nail in the coffin with a fadeaway jumper. 

Aside from Jalalon, Zachary Nicholls mustered 15 markers, with 10 coming from the three-point area.

Allen Enriquez and Michael Salado also had double figures with 11 points apiece.

On the other hand, Onwubere led EAC with 24 points, 9 rebound and one steal as the UN Avenue-based squadron downgraded their win-loss standing to 2-15. 

EAC will have its last match of the season against Mapua Institute of Technology on Friday, October 9.

Scores:

Arellano (98) - Jalalon 31, Nicholls 15, Enriquez 11, Salado 11, Gumaru 8, Meca 7, Holts 5, Cadavis 4, De Guzman 3, Bangga 2, Ongolo 0, Ortega, 0, Zamora 0.

EAC (90) - Onwubere 24, Hamadou 20, Munsayac 15, Mejos 13, General 8, Bonleon 5, Diego 5, Pascual 0, Corilla 0, Estacio 0. 

Quarter scores: 26-16, 52-38, 74-61, 98-90.

 – Rappler.com