Benilde shocks Letran, enters Fr. Martin finals
MANILA, Philippines – Luis Antonio Sinco scored crucial baskets in the final minute and led the College of St. Benilde-A Blazers past the Letran Knights, 63-61, in their semi-final encounter in the 9th Fr. Martin Cup Saturday.
Sinco, who finished with 17 points, scored six markers in the final 53.5 seconds to allow the Blazers to set up a winner-take-all finals against defending champion San Beda Red Lions this weekend.
The Blazers’ triumph came three weeks after Gabby Velasco came aboard as their new coach.
They fought back from five points down in the final quarter, with Mark Romero forcing a 56-all deadlock via a driving lay-up in the last 1:53.
A pair of drives from Sinco allowed the Blazers to take the lead, 61-56.
The Knights managed to stay close after a triple by McJour Luib, but Sinco kept the Blazers ahead with a free throw to make it 62-61 with only 4.8 seconds left.
Sinco then sank another charity a second later to finalize the count.
The Knights could have won it as time expired, but Rey Nambatac’s triple missed its mark as the buzzer sounded.
“Nahirapan kami. Buti na lang, hindi sila sumuko,” said Velasco.
The Red Lions, meanwhile, made it to the finals after breezing past the Arellano University Chiefs, 75-65, behind the efforts of Rome dela Rosa and Ola Adeogun.
The Fr. Martin finals will be held on Saturday at the Trinity University of Asia gym.