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Knights down Bombers

Games Today
(The Arena, San Juan City)
12 noon – EAC vs San Sebastian (srs)
2 p.m. – Lyceum vs Perpetual (srs)
4 p.m. – St. Benilde vs Arellano (srs)

Reigning champion Letran exploded in the fourth quarter as it turned back feisty Jose Rizal University, 67-62, yesterday for solo third place in NCAA men’s basketball at The Arena in San Juan City.

Veteran playmaker Rey Nambatac turned hot in the crucial moments to finish with 29 points – 15 in the fourth quarter – while hauling down five rebounds and dishing off two steals as the Knights picked up their fifth victory against two losses.

It was a much-needed win for Letran which came to the game nursing a 61-55 loss to University of Perpetual Help a few days back that put it into a three-way tie with the Altas and the Arellano Chiefs at third to fifth place.

The Knights trailed for most part of the first three quarters until finding their offensive rhythm early in the final period.

Down by 50-48, Letran uncorked a 12-3 blast highlighted by two triples from Nambatac to grab a 60-53 lead with 4:37 left.

The Bombers tried to regain their lost composure, but the Knights hung tough until the final buzzer.

John Quinto provided enough reinforcements for Letran with 12 points and four assists, while Jom Sollano finished with 11 rebounds and two blocks.

Letran’s victory overshadowed Paolo Pontejos’ off-the-bench performance for JRU, where he fired a season-high 27 points highlighted by six triples.

JRU’s main man Teytey Teodoro, meanwhile, was limited to only four points in 10 minutes of action after hurting his left ankle early in the game.

The Bombers fell to 2-4 to remain at seventh place.

LETRAN 67 – Nambatac 29, Quinto 12, Calvo 9, Ambohot 4, Balanza 4, Sollano 4, Luib 3, Bernabe 2, Apreku 0, Balagasay 0, Dela Peña 0, Pambid 0.

JRU 62 – Pontejos 27, Dela Virgen 9, Grospe 6, Lasquety 5, Mendoza 5, Teodoro 4, AbdulWahab 2, Poutouchi 2, Cruz 2, Astilla 0, Dela Paz 0.

Quarters: 10-12, 23-29, 44-45, 67-62