(The Arena, San Juan City)
2 p.m. – Arellano vs CSB-LSGH (Jrs.)
4 p.m. – Arellano vs San Beda (Srs.)
Powerhouse teams Arellano and San Beda battle anew for the No. 1 seeding today in NCAA men’s basketball playoff at The Arena in San Juan.
Tied at the helm with identical 14-4 win-loss records, the winner in their 4 p.m. confrontation will gain the top spot and clash with No. 4 University of Perpetual Help in the Final Four which starts Friday.
The losing squad will, for its part, will face No. 3 Mapua in the other semifinal pairing.
It will be the second time in four days that Arellano and San Beda will be facing each other after the Red Lions prevailed, 91-81, in their final elims matchup last Friday.
The Red Lions also won their first elims meeting, 101-86.
Though armed with a twice-to-beat edge along with Arellano, San Beda coach Jamike Jarin intends to reaffirm their mastery over the Chiefs to bolster their bid of regaining the title they lost last season to Letran.
In order to do that, they must again stop Arellano’s 1-2 punch in Jio Jalalon and Kent Salado.
“No disrespect to my players, but Jio Jalalon and Kent Salado are the best 1-2 guards in the entire college,” said Jarin.
After 18 games, Jalalon and Salado averaged a combined 35.3 points, 11.6 rebounds, and 10.5 assists per game.
But while Jalalon and Salado are lethal weapons, Jarin should not discount the Chiefs’ strong support group composed of Lervin Flores, Donald Gumaru and Dioncee Holts.
For Arellano, it is time to stop losing against San Beda.