Chiefs eye top semis seeding vs Pirates
By Joey Villar Updated Tuesday October 07, 2014 - 3:57pm

Games Wednesday

(The Arena, San Juan)

12 p.m. - Letran vs St. Benilde (jrs/srs)

4 p.m. - Arellano U vs Lyceum (srs/jrs)

MANILA, Philippines - Arellano University seeks to continue its fairy tale run as it takes on an already-ran Lyceum for the top seeding in the 90th NCAA basketball tournament at The Arena in San Juan City Wednesday.

The Chiefs shocked the heavily favored San Beda Lions last Saturday to clinch their first ever trip to the Final Four since joining the league five years ago and booked with a twice-to-beat advantage along the way.

Another win over Lyceum, already out of it all with a 6-11 (win-loss) mark, in their 2 p.m. showdown will seal Arellano, which currently owns a 13-4 record, the top seeding in the Final Four where it will take the No. 4 team needing just a win to make a breakthrough finals stint.

But first things first, Arellano U coach Jerry Codinera wants his players to concentrate on beating the Pirates, a team the Chiefs routed, 93-80, in the first round on June 30.

"Although we're happy we hit two birds in one stone by making the Final Four and getting that important twice-to-beat advantage, we can't think ahead of ourselves and just focus on our the Lyceum game first," said Codinera.

A loss though by Arellano U will forge a playoff for the No. 1 spot against San Beda (13-5) either on Friday or Saturday.

Codinera attributed his team's successes to steady efforts by American Dioncee Holts, Jiovani Jalalon, John Pinto and Keith Agovida and the re-emergence of pro-bound Prince Caperal.

"There are so many heroes but we can't ignore the other parts and members of the team who played their roles in helping us where we are right now," said Codinera.

Meanwhile, College of St. Benilde guns for a playoff for a Final Four berth as it tackles an ousted but dangerous Letran side at 4 p.m.

The Blazers survived the undermanned Mapua Cardinals, 87-76, to improve to 11-6 and a win over the Knights, currently with an 8-9 slate which it hopes to improve by ending its campaign with a win, will send them in a three-way tie for the last two Final Four seats.

If it happens, St. Benilde will play Perpetual Help (12-6) in a knock-out duel tomorrow for the last Final Four spot where the winner will take on Jose Rizal (12-6), which automatically advanced to the Final Four due with the highest quotient among the three, in another playoff for the No. 3 seeding on Saturday.

St. Benilde coach Gabby Velasco, however, stressed the need for his team to play with urgency.

"We played bad even though we won against Mapua. We can't afford to play like this against Letran," said Velasco.

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AU Chiefs 13 4
SBC Red Lions 13 5
UPHSD Altas 12 6
JRU Heavy Bombers 12 6
CSB Blazers 11 6
CSJL Knights 8 9
LPU Pirates 6 11
SSC Stags 5 13
MIT Cardinals 4 14
EAC Generals 4 14


Wednesday, October 8, 2014 @ San Juan Arena
12:00 PM - Game 1 - Jrs/Srs
4:00 PM - Game 2 - Srs/Jrs