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UCBL: CEU favored over UB

(photo from UCBL Facebook)

(photo from UCBL Facebook)

By Jerome Lagunzad

Games Today
(Olivarez College gym)
12 noon – UB vs CEU
2 p.m. – Olivarez vs TIP

The league’s head meets its tail as defending champion Centro Escolar University takes on University of Batangas today in the Universities and Colleges Basketball League (UCBL) Season 2 at the Olivarez College gym in Sucat, Parañaque City.

Tip off is at 12 noon with the well-rested Scorpions out to extend their winning streak to six games and close in on a first-round sweep against a Brahmans side coming off a breakthrough victory over the weekend.

UB ended a series of heartbreaks at the expense of struggling Technological Institute of the Philippines 79-77 last Saturday, with Timmy Alade combining with African big man Raoul Yemeli and John Caspe in leading their charge.

And that’s an enough reason for the Scorpions, fresh from an 82-76 win over top title threat Colegio de San Lorenzo exactly 10 days ago, to keep themselves in their sharpest form, according to CEU coach Yong Garcia.

“I still believe that our greatest foe remains ourselves. That’s why I’m egging my players to always put in an extra effort in terms of making each and everyone a better version of themselves,” he said.

The Engineers have a chance to put their title bid back on track when they square off with the Sea Lions at 2 p.m.

Olivarez College is tipped as the slight favorites since it is determined to pick up from where it left off following a 91-82 win over skidding Bulacan State University last Saturday.

But Sea Lions coach Mike Saguiguit is expecting nothing less than a grind-it-out affair against the Engineers, saying: “Most of their losses are close decisions. That goes to show how tough TIP is. I hope my players are up for the challenge,” he said.