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UCBL: Scorpions, Griffins clash for solo lead

credits: UCBL Facebook Page

credits: UCBL Facebook Page

Games Today (Olivarez College gym)
12 noon. – UB vs Lyceum-Batangas
2 p.m. – CdSL vs CEU

Defending champion Centro Escolar University and Colegio de San Lorenzo square off in a possible finals preview today in the Universities and Colleges Basketball League (UCBL) Season 2 at the Olivarez College gym in Sucat, Parañaque City.

The last two remaining undefeated squads in the eight-team field, the Scorpions and the Griffins take center stage at 2 o’clock, both eager to sustain their winning forms and seize the hold of solo leadership.

Streaking CdSL should play the favorite’s role since the Griffins are riding the crest of a five-game winning streak behind Benin import Soulemane Chabi Yo, Jon Gabriel, Gelo Sablan and Jan Formento.

The absence of Congolese big man Rod Ebondo, who’s been tapped to suit up for Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas in the ongoing FIBA Asia Champions Cup in Chenzhou, China, leaves a big shoe to fill for the Scorpions—and a glaring hole that the Griffins could pounce on.

But CdSL coach Boni Garcia believes CEU, even without the Ebondo, remains a tough assignment.

“That development could be a double-edged sword. It gives us an advantage in terms of manpower but that could also open more opportunities to their other players. They’re a very organized team so I’m expecting a tough match,” Garcia said.

Clashing in the opener set at 12 noon are slumping squads, University of Batangas and newcomer Lyceum-Batangas.

The Scorpions may also miss import Ebuka Umeanozie and Mark Neil Cruz due to respective injuries.

Umeanozie sprained his left ankle early in the third canto while Cruz appeared to suffer an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury in his left knee during CEU’s 79-68 win over Bulacan State University last Thursday. (Jerome Lagunzad)