12 April 2015,
St. Placid gymnasium,
San Beda College campus,
I came to the St. Placid gymnasium last Sunday to watch the start of the 21st Fr. Martin Summer Cup basketball tournament.
This is what greeted me when I finally settled down to watch the first game of pre-season cagefest.
The San Beda Red Cubs-B team were introducing new players into their lineup.
(New kids on the block: John Baltazar in a loose ball play with teammate, #9 de Luna).
They were drawing crucial baskets from John Baltazar and Luke Sese, new guys I have never seen before.
Their big presence inside the paint helped them beat the San Sebastian Staglets, 84-79.
With their first win, the Red Cubs-B were able to take charge in Group B of the junior division.
(left photo:Red Cub Luke Sese(9) tries to get past SSC Staglet Tamparong. Right photo: John Baltazar is about to shoot a free throw).
Baltazar stands at 6’1 according to Team B coach Noli Mejos, and this 8th grader fired 18 points for the Red Cubs-B.
Sese, a new guy who is still unknown to me, contributed 17.
The Red Cubs turned the tables around on the Staglets in the remaining five minutes, with Baltazar and Sese creating trouble with the team’s fullcourt trapping defense.
(John Baltazar in possession battle under the basket).
Sucessive baskets from Baltazar and Ry de la Rosa allowed them to move away from a 65-all deadlock.
Bernard de Guia, who led with 21 points, and Baltazar then capped San Beda’s breakaway with a layup and a pair of charities in the last 2:27, 73-65.
“It worked. Our fullcourt press and trapping,” said Mejos.
(Staglet Kobe Canoy (14) gets double teamed by the Red Cubs).