MANILA, Philippines – A bizarre ending highlighted the Letran Knights' 80-79 escape over the Lyceum Pirates in the NCAA Season 94 men’s basketball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre on Friday, October 5.
Lyceum's Jaycee Marcelino got open for three with 40.8 seconds remaining to tie the game at 80. From there, both teams were unable to score and the game was set to go into overtime.
But after the final buzzer, the referees went to the scorers’ table to review Marcelino’s shot, which was downgraded to a two, suddenly giving Letran a one-point victory.
Despite the controversial circumstances of the review, Lyceum head coach Topex Robinson said the team would no longer push for a protest.
With the surprise victory, the Knights remained in the hunt for a twice-to-beat advantage in the Final Four at 11-4 along with Lyceum, which slipped to second at 14-2 behind defending champion San Beda (14-1).
Letran was the Better team today. Lost to them fair and Square. Congrats to Coach Jeff Napa and the rest of the team. Its going to be an exciting final four. #LoveServeCare # — Topex Robinson (@coachtopex) October 5, 2018
The burly Larry Muyang finished with a monster double-double of 23 points and 16 rebounds on a near-perfect 11-of-12 (92%) shooting with 4 blocks to boot to power the Knights.
Do-it-all Bong Quinto – who had a lengthy rest due to early foul trouble – checked in with about 7 minutes left in the 4th quarter where immediately went to work, exploding for 10 straight points to outscore the Pirates, 10-6, in that stretch. He finished with 20 markers, 7 boards and 4 assists
JP Calvo also fought through cramps and added 18 points, 6 dimes and 4 boards for the Knights.
Mike Nzeusseu, meanwhile, paced the Pirates with a double-double of 25 points and 10 boards. CJ Perez chipped in 16 points, 8 boards and 3 assists, while JC Marcelino finished with 9 points, 7 dimes and 4 boards.
Letran 80 – Muyang 23, Quinto 20, Calvo 18, Ambohot 6, Fajarito 4, Batiller 3, Galvelo 3, Celis 2, Taladua 1, Yu 0, Balagasay 0.
Lyceum 79 – Nzeusseu 25, Perez 16, Marcelino JC 9, Pretta 8, Marcelino JV 7, Ayaay 5, Caduyac 4, Santos 3, Ibanez 2, Serrano 0, Valdez 0, Yong 0.
Quarters: 18-21, 44-48, 64-68, 80-79.
San Beda 14-1
San Sebastian 4-11