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Letran slashes Benilde, secures 3-peat banner

by Jericho Zafra

THE Colegio de San Juan de Letran Knights secured their walls against De La Salle College of St. Benilde Blazers after the Knights notched the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)Season 98 Men’s Seniors Basketball Championship on Sunday in Antipolo.

The season ended with an 81-67 score.

This is the Knights’ third consecutive title after the Blazers failed to clinch their sought-after win following their first appearance on the NCAA finals podium after 20 years.

Following the streak of three successive titles from 1982 to 1984, the victory allowed the Knights to seal a second three-peat for the institution.

Despite the absence of the Knights’ team captain Fran Yu who was ejected during the finals game 2, King Caralipio led Letran in the champions league romp with 20 points, eight rebounds, and two assists. Kobe Monje contributed 11 points, while Brent Paraiso scored 16. 

Meanwhile, Will Gozum was dismissed from the game with 1:44 left in the fourth quarter after a disqualifying foul on Paolo Javillonar.

Caralipio was also hailed as the finals MVP, the NCAA announced.

“Lahat ng sakripisyo namin nagbunga na, para sa inyo to Letran community, sa lahat ng sumusuporta sa’min, para kay Fran Yu,” Caralipio said during an interview.

Caralipio was among the four Knights players to play their last collegiate year for the school next to Fran Yu, Brent Paraiso, and Tommy Olivario.

The oldest collegiate league likewise hailed the Knights’ Bonnie Tan as coach of the year.

Final scores:

Letran Knights – 81 – Caralipio 20, Paraison 16, Monje 11, Reyson 8, Sanglang 8, Santos 7, Olivario 4, Go 4, Guarinio 2, Javillonar 1, Tolentino 0, Bojorcelo 0.

Benilde Blazers – 67 – Corteza 14, Pasturan 10, Gozum 10, Oczon 9, Sangco 6, Nayve 6, Flores 5, Marcos 3, Cullar 2, Carlos 2, Davis 0.

Quarter scores: 

Quarter 1: 24-21 

Quarter 2: 51-33 

Quarter 3: 70-54 

Quarter 4: 81-67 

Photo Credit: National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Facebook Page



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