The STI College Olympians worked out an early lead and then just coasted along the way to beat opening day winner New Era University 60 – 43. The game started with the Olympians racing to a 6 – 0 lead and they never looked back. The Olympians stymied the hunters offense as they scored mostly from the free throw line in the first quarter. By the second quarter all the Hunters could muster were just 18 points. That was largely because the Olympians employed their vaunted full court press. Because of the Olympians press the Hunters tried to run and outhustle the STI cagers but were met by their big frontline once they crossed the line.
Henri Atanga –Betayene and Maclean Sabellina swatted away tons of shots from the Hunters as their defensive presence made it hard for the Hunters to ignite a big run. Ramel Pepito topscored for the Hunters but all he could muster was 8 points, a far cry from his 22 point game 1 performance on opening day. On the other hand, the Olympians relied on the troika of big man Cedric Ablaza, point guard RK Morales and NAASCU 2009 Mythical 5 member Jerald Bautista. Morales paced the Olympians in the first half with his three pointers while Ablaza foiled the New Era 2nd half rally by driving to the hoop and scoring at will.
The Olympians were actually on their way to a rout but was derailed in their bid when the Hunters came back in the third period. After scoring only 18 first half points, the Quezon City based New Era team scored the same number of points in the third canto after the Olympians fell in a maze of errors. Most of the errors came from palming the ball and travelling calls. This allowed the Hunters to come back but only momentarily. When Betayene came in, he swatted away shots again and camped inside the shaded lane which made the Hunters resort to three point shots that rarely went in. The Olympians, the Hawks and the Phoenix are the only unbeaten teams after two games as the other opening day winners fell today namely the Scorpions, Eagles and Hunters.
STI COLLEGE (60)
Ablaza 12, Morales 10, Bautista 9, Betayene 5, Gabo 4, Moreno 4, Po 4, Villadoz 4, Sabellina 4, Ihalas 2, Alcantara 2, Chavez 0, Daguplo 0, Melano 0
NEW ERA UNIVERSITY (43)
Pepito 8, Santos 7, Candelina 6, Quintal 6, Acuña 5, Sevilla 4, Faner 4, Tengco 2 Talastas 1, Villarosa 0,
14 – 9, 31- 18, 49 -36, 60 - 43