Mapua Cardinals and UPHSD Altas shooting for their second win

UNIVERSITY of Perpetual Help System DALTA (UPHSD) and Mapua seek to steal some of the spotlight from the big guns as they battle San Sebastian Stags and Jose Rizal University (JRU) Bombers, respectively, on Friday in the 97th NCAA basketball tournament at the La Salle Greenhills Gym in Mandaluyong.

The Altas, who downed the Bombers, 77-56, on Tuesday, tackle the Stags (0-1) at 12 noon while the Cardinals, who escaped past the Emilio Aguinaldo College (EAC) Generals, 73-67, on Sunday, battle the Bombers at 3 p.m. nothing in mind but to join Letran and San Beda, both unbeaten in two starts, at the helm.

“We just want respect,” said UPHSD coach Mike Saguiguit, who is shooting for a second win since assuming the job three years ago.

The Las Piñas-based dribblers bared their true intentions in the first game where they came out exceeding expectations after strong performances by remnants Kim Aurin, Jeff Egan and Jielo Razon.

Of the three, Mr. Aurin was most impressive with 20 points, four rebounds and three assists while Messrs. Egan and Razon scattered 14 and 13 points, respectively, and there are high hopes they could sustain their form on this one.

“We need them to really step up big for us although it would still take the whole team to come through for us to win again,” said Mr. Saguiguit.

The Cardinals are expected to rely anew on the duo of Carl Lacap and Warren Bonifacio, who scored all their combined 21 points in the fourth quarter that led to their come-from-behind win. — Joey Villar