Top 4 contenders JRU, Letran battle separate foes

LETRAN’s Brent Paraiso (38) leads the Knights to the top 4. — NCAA/GMA-SYNERGY

Games Today(Filoil EcoOil Centre)12 p.m. — JRU vs SSC-R3 p.m. — AU vs Letran

JOSE Rizal University (JRU) and Letran seek to keep a firmer grip of its place in the magic four as they battle San Sebastian College (SSC) and Arellano U (AU), respectively, today in NCAA Season 98 at the Filoil EcoOil Centre.

The Bombers were coming off a pair of giant-sized victories — the first an 83-80 win over the San Beda Lions on Oct. 4 and the other a 63-57 triumph over the Lyceum of the Philippines U Pirates three days later — that catapulted them to the top 4 with a 5-2 mark.

JRU got derailed though by some postponements due to health and safety protocols and will get to return to court for the first time in two weeks against SSC, a team out to improve on its 3-5 slate, when the two face off at 12 p.m.

The Knights, clinging on to No. 4 with a 7-3 record, for their part, set out to extend their four-game streak as they battle the Chiefs, the same bunch that dealt them a painful 62-59 beating a little over a month ago.

Letran is coming off a four-game streak that was capped 74-59 demolition of University of Perpetual Help Tuesday.

And the three-peat-seeking champions are expected to throw in everything including the kitchen sink against one of the teams that made the former’s life miserable in the first round.

Expected to lead Letran’s band of brothers are the duo of Brent Paraiso and Louie Sangalang, who are suddenly behaving like choirboys after being miscreants in the first round that saw them being banned for a game.

And thanks to their drastic change of behaviors, Messrs. Paraiso and Sangalang have been playing well to the delight of the Knights.

“We have to play smart since this is our last year,” said Mr. Paraiso, who dropped a 16-point masterpiece that he spiked with seven rebounds and three assists.

Playing coolly, Mr. Sangalang had a nice game too — a 10-point, 10-rebound, one-steal and one-block effort. — Joey Villar

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