NCAA Jrs: Tolentino stars as Red Cubs move one win away from historic sweep
By Joey Villar Updated Monday November 11, 2013 - 3:53pm

MANILA, Philippines - Arvin Tolentino is one of the most sought after high school basketball player in the country today. On Monday, he showed why.

Tolentino unloaded an 11-point barrage in the fourth quarter and had a key defensive gem in the stretch as San Beda turned back La Salle-Greenhills, 79-68, to move on the crest of a historic title sweep in the 89th NCAA junior basketball tournament at the MOA Arena in Pasay City.

Tolentino, a 17-year-old Angono-Rizal native who is being recruited by two United States NCAA Division Schools and four big local universities, finished with a team-high 21 points, the bulk coming in the pivotal stretch of the last period as the Cubs moved a win closer to nailing a league-high 21st title.

"He played big for us," said San Beda coach JV Sison, who took over from Brit Reroma, referring to Tolentino.

The Cubs, who swept their way to the finals after an 18-0 elimination round effort, will thus go for a 20-game sweep on Thursday at the same venue that will put them alongside the San Sebastian Staglets' 14-game title sweep five years ago.

And Tolentino had a lot of things to do with it.

"We just tried to do things as a team, that helped me come up with this game," said Tolentino, whose schools interested in him included Duke and Rhode Islands in the US and Ateneo, La Salle and National U.

Tolentino though rued the possibility of ending up playing locally due to poverty.

"An assistant coach from Duke asked me to go to the US and join their camp, Rhode Islands too," said Tolentino, whose father Alberto is a gaffer in a cockpit arena and mother Amparo a housewife.

"I would have loved to play in the US but we have no means to go there so I'll probably stick around here" he added.

The Greenies drew a spectacular performance from Prince Rivero, Tolentino's teammate in the Phl team in the World 3x3 Under-18 championship in Jakarta, Indonesia a few months back, after finishing with 34 points, 24 rebounds, three steals and two assists.

It ended in a loss though.

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Monday, Nov 11, 2013 @ MOA Arena
2:30 pm - Game 1
Nov 14, 2:30 PM - Game 2