Nov. 14, 2013
SM MOA Arena,
It’s a perfect season for the San Beda Red Cubs.
And, history has been achieved because of this.
The defending champion San Beda Red Cubs outworked the La Salle Greenhills Greenies in the final quarter.
(courtesy of UAAP-NCAA memes twitpics).
Arvin Tolentino, one of 10 graduating players, stood out again.
But he was not as prolific as he was in Game 1, as rival Rashleigh “Prince” Rivero outdid him once again.
Nevertheless, he had made it a memorable season, not only for himself, but his teammates as well.
Joshua Caracut and Adven Diputado, who are also graduating at the end of the schoolyear, stepped when the 6’5 Tolentino could not at endgame.
– SBC RED CUBS 65, LSGH Greenies 59
Together, the three’s efforts lifted the Red Cubs to an historical 65-59 victory over the La Salle Greenies in Game 2 of the 89th National Collegiate Athletic Association junior basketball finals.
They scored crucial baskets in the last 41.4 seconds, and handed the Red Cubs their fifth straight crown when action was over at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
This allowed the Red Cubs to end their season with a record-setting 20-game sweep.
(Red Cubs celebrate. Photo sourced from UBL).
This is their fifth straight crown, and the last time a junior squad achieved this was 41 years ago.
The Mapua Red Robins won it from 1968 to 1972.
In the finals series, the Red Cubs enjoyed a thrice-to-beat incentive after having swept their 18-game elimination round assignment. , became the second team since 2008 to sweep the junior cagefest.
The San Sebastian Staglets did the last time around five years ago.
The team spearheaded by Ryan Buenafe, Jamil Ortuoste, Almond Vosotros, Raffy Gusi, Yutien Andrada and Arvie Bringas, swept their way to the crown after winning all their 14 games.
This including two finals encounters with the Letran Squires, and for a total of 16 matches.
They have also surpassed the feat of the Staglets, who had a four-peat from 2005 to 2008.
In the beginning, the Red Cubs took a 24-8 advantage in the first period.
But they had a scary in the next three quarters, when the Greenies ate their big lead away.
Rivero brought the Greenies close, 56-60, with a drive past Javee Mocon in the last 1:33.
They moved out of range in the last 28. 5 seconds after Tolentino scored two charities, 62-56.
Caracut replied with two charities of his own after the Greenies continued to threaten the Red Cubs of two freebies from Michael de la Cruz.
This allowed the Red Cubs to keep their distance, 64-58.
Diputado’s split with 6.4 seconds finalized the count, and it came after de la Cruz and Rivero bungled their triples.
“Naayos naming iyung execution sa huli kaya naka-score ulit kami sa fourth. Nagkagulo kasi sa screens. Nung practices pa lang, pakiramdam ko magcha-champion na kami. The second unit is as competitive as the first unit,” said Red Cubs coach JB Sison.
Sison took over from Britt Reroma, who quit last summer.
Reroma was around when the Red Cubs ended up with an 18-0 sweep of the elimination, and was between once in their championship game with the Greenies.
Tongco showed the way with 17 points, while Caracut made 14 points, and Tolentino chipped in 12.
Alex Barrera fired 17 points and 13 rebounds for the Greenies.
Rivero had 15 points and 18 boards, and Kobe Paras hit 11 points and 13 rebounds.
-PLAY BY PLAY
The Greenies fought it out in the third period.
Behind, 33-46, they charged to within five points behind Barrera, with his putback and a drive off Tolentino touching off an 11-0 run.
Paras capped it with a triple, and the Greenies went on to come within five, 41-46, in the last 3:11.
In the fourth period, LSGH came close when Rivero faked to the left of Javee Mocon for a drive which allowed them to scare the Red Cubs, 56-60, with 1:33 left.
– WHATS IN STORE FOR THE RED CUBS
The 18-year old Arvin is on his final year with the Red Cubs, and so are nine other teammates
He said he is happy with the way the season turned out for him and his teammates.
“Sobrang saya, lahat ng hard work at sakripisyo namin ay nasuklian,” remarked Arvin.
As of now, he remains undecided where he will move on and find another school.
Deciding to accept an offer in Duke University in San Francisco has been left to his family because doing so may be an expensive proposition for him.
The other graduating Red Cubs are Adven Diputado, Javee Mocon, Lancelot Abude, Norrish Decapia, and John Gumtang among others.
Making it to the team A of the San Beda Red Lions is not an option at the moment.
Two team A players are graduating, and they are forwards Rome de la Rosa and Kyle Pascual.
Two guys could make it to Team A if they decide to stay put next season.
Tolentino could earn that slot with Mocon if both choose to stay with San Beda at the end of the school year.
When the schoolyear ends, many school teams will be seek out members of the Red Cubs, and among those who are aggressively seeking them out are the Ateneo Blue Eagles and La Salle Green Archers.
-THE SCORES :
San Beda 65 – Tongco 17, Caracut 14, Tolentino 12, Diputado 10, Mocon 4, Abude 3, Decapia 2, Gumtang 2, Abuda 1, Abatayo 0.
LSGH 59 – Barrera 17, Rivero 15, Paras 11, Dela Cruz 6, Abadeza 5, Ramilo 3, Lanot 2, San Juan 0.
Quarterscores: 24-8, 39-28, 51-46, 65-59.