The De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB) Blazers lost to the San Sebastian College-Recoletos (SSC-R) Golden Stags, 84-94, after a cold second half, losing their preseason opener on Saturday, May 6, at the Filoil EcoOil Center, San Juan.
An offensive drought highlighted the early minutes of the ball game with both teams struggling to put the ball through the hoop. Miguel Corteza opened the scoring for the Blazers with his patented teardrop, while it was Alex Desoyo who drew the first basket for the Stags. After the early jitters, both teams started to heat up.
Reggz Gabat nailed a three for the Stags while Blazers’ team captain Robi Nayve would answer back with a three of his own to even things up, 7-7. Both teams would continue to have a back-and-forth affair, after consecutive makes from the paint and the perimeter. The Blazers would edge out the Stags in the first period after charity conversions from Felipe Marasigan, 22-21.
The Blazers turned on their jets and started to heat up from all corners in the second quarter. Corteza followed up his hot start after muscling his way to the basket and converting his charities, 25-21. The Stags put on a valiant effort to keep the game within striking distance, however, the men in green and white continue to push the ball forward, igniting an 11-2 run highlighted by a Prince Carlos floater, two three-point plays by Patrick Dimayuga, capped off with a Corteza basket. The Blazers end the period up by 10, 43-33.
Determined to turn things around, the Stags kicked off the third period streaking hot after an early 12-3 run consisted of mid range jumpers and several and-one conversions headed by Desoyo and Cris Shanoda to cut down the Blazers lead to two, 46-44. After the short intermission, forward Mark Sangco made sure to add to the Blazers’ total after a tough finish to the basket and converting his bonus free throw, 50-44. Despite the short run by the Taft squad, the Stags continued to turn their shots to points, 50-49. The Stags would partially take the lead from the Blazers after a James Una free throw, 63-64, however, star guard Miguel Oczon would reclaim the lead for the Blazers with a deep three to end the period, 66-64.
In a game of runs, the Blazers made sure to go on a run of their own. Nayve and Sangco headed a 7-2 run for the Taft squad early in the payoff period to widen the lead to seven, 73-66. However, despite the run, the Stags continued to push forward, trimming down the deficit to just one, 73-72. The Stags, headed by their guards Desoyo and Rafael Are, continued to knock down their shots to reclaim and give the men in red and yellow a six point lead, 77-83. The backcourt duo of Desoyo and Are heated up from downtown in the latter part of the period, securing the win against the Blazers, 84-94.
Desoyo was named player of the game after dropping 19 points alongside six assists. On the other hand, Corteza and Sangco are the only two players from the Blazers who scored in double figures, dropping 19 and 12 points respectively.
The Blazers will go head-to-head against the University of Perpetual Help System - DALTA (UPHSD) on Saturday, May 13, at the same venue with live coverage in the FilOil EcoOil Sports Facebook page.
DLS-CSB (84): Corteza 19, Sangco 12, Oczon 9, Dimayuga 7, Marasigan 7, Nayve 7, Turco 7, Marcos 5, Carlos 4, Jarque 3, Lepalam 3, Arciaga 1, Cajucom 0, Serrano 0
SSC-R (94): Are 20, Desoyo 19, Gabat 16, Shanoda 9, Felebrico 7, Una 5, Barroga 4, Castor 3, Concha 3, Suico 3, Aguila 2, Velasco 2, Gabat 1, De Leon 0, Pascual 0