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CEU thumps CdSL, clinches top seeding

MANILA, Philippines — Defending champion Centro Escolar University reaffirmed its mastery over top challenger Colegio de San Lorenzo, 69-57, and clinched the top seeding in the semis of the second Universities and Colleges Basketball League (UCBL) yesterday at the Olivarez College gym in Sucat, Parañaque.

Paul Galinato shone brightest for the CEU Scorpions by scattering 15 points while veteran guard Orlan Wamar and Judel Fuentes added at least 10 points each to help their team notch its seventh straight and 13th overall in 14 matches.

CEU’s defense was also rock-solid as it limited the production of CdSL’s do-it-all big man Soulemane Chabi Yo to halt the Griffins’ seven-game win run.

 “We focused on improving our team defense,” said CEU coach Yong Garcia, whose wards prevailed over the Griffins, 82-76, in the first round.

The Griffins finished the double-round elims with a 12-2 mark.

Despite the absence of CEU star center Rod Ebondo, the 6-foot-6 Chabi Yo managed only 10 points on a horrible 4-of-15 shooting from the field.

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 “We know that their plays start and end with Chabi Yo. So I reminded my big men to hold their ground and make sure he won’t get any baskets in the lane,” added Garcia.

Garcia also paid tribute to the defensive exploits by Nigerian Ebuka Umeanozie, Louis Baconcon, Mark Neil Cruz and Joseph Manlangit.

A jumper by Cruz gave the Scorpions their biggest lead at 35-12 in the second frame.


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