Red Cubs finish off stubborn Robins, roar to six-peat
By Joey Villar Updated Saturday October 25, 2014 - 7:00pm

MANILA, Philippines -- If there is doubt about San Beda being one of the best basketball programs in the country today,  the Red Cubs put it to rest.

A few days after their its senior team asserted its supremacy of the college division, San Beda made it a double celebration after it outlasted a gritty Mapua side, 78-65, in overtime to emerge the most titled high school team in the NCAA before a decent-sized MOA Arena crowd Sunday.

The Cubs needed extra five minutes to finish off the stubborn Robins and complete a 2-1 series win that gave the former an unprecedented six-peat feat and a league-best 21st juniors championship.

When it was over, the Cubs whoop it up on centercourt in frantic celebration as they made it a twin triumph for the Mendiola-based campus after the Lions swept the Arellano University Chiefs last Wednesday to snare their 19th seniors title.

"It's a great feeling being part of history," said San Beda coach JB Sison, who took over last year and was responsible for steering the school to the last two of its six straight championships.

"It was made sweeter because we came into the series as underdogs," added Sison, who lost the opener, 75-84, last Monday before fighting back with a 78-68 triumph Wednesday that forged the decider.
San Beda though nearly blew it.

Up by as much as 16 points in the third quarter and 11 points going into the final two minutes of regulation, the Cubs went cold, allowing the Randy Alcantara-mentored Robins to claw their way back by unleashing an 11-0 blitz capped by a David Velvez lay-up to knot it at 59-all.

After turning the ball over on the next possession, Mapua got another chance and nearly pulled off one of biggest comeback victories in league history but Noah Lugo missed a potential game-winning floater with a fraction of a second to go, sending the game into OT.

It was all Cubs from there.

Andrei Caracut, a many-time national youth team mainstay, came through with a game of his life and erupted for a series high 30 points including nine in OT when San Beda zapped the last fight out of Mapua.

Caracut emerged the Finals MVP for his heroics.

After playing silent in the first two games, Nick Abatayo finally found his groove and racked up 14 points and 18 rebounds while Kennth Alas likewise wound up with a double-double effort with 12 points and 11 boards.

Caracut later said the key was not giving up.

"I don't what happened to us, we just lost it in that two-minute span, good thing we stayed postive," said Caracut in Filipino.

Like Caracut, Lugo dished out a performance to remember as he helped Mapua rally from double-digit deficits to force overtime and finished with a triple-double, 18 points, 12 caroms and 10 assists.

Lugo, however, missed that shot late in regulation that would have re-established Mapua as NCAA high school basketball's No. 1 team.

Instead, the Robins stayed title-less in the last 14 seasons and slid at No. 2 with 20 crowns.

The scores:

SBC (78) - Caracut 30, Abatayo 14, Alas 12, Decapia 6, Bordeus 6, Diputado 3, Framil 3, Abuhijle 2, Furaque 2.

MIT (65) - Lugo 18, Concepcion 13, Aguirre 12, Velvez 9, Victoria 5, Calderon 4, Bonifacio 3, Pascua 1, Cabural 0, Enriquez 0, Salenga 0.

Quarterscores: 19-10, 28-25, 45-32, 59-59, 78-65

Views expressed in this section are those of the readers and do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of or any of its sister publications. does not knowingly publish false information and may not be held liable for the views of readers exercising their right to free expression.
comments powered by Disqus
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