Letran found unlikely heroes in Jeo Ambohot and Jeremiah Taladua as the Knights upended the Arellano Chiefs, 82–75, to end a two-game losing skid in the NCAA Season 93 basketball wars on Tuesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
Ambohot scored 15 points and 13 rebounds, who, managed to outweigh his counterparts in Arellano — the school where he used to play.
“Motivation narin ‘yun.. Tinanggal kasi nila ko. Parang sinasabi ko sa sarili ko na sila ‘yung kalaban namin, ipapakita ko ‘yung best ko,” said Ambohot who played for Arellano’s Team B in 2015 when asked about facing his former squad.
The 6-foot-7 big man from Compostella Valley also had five rejections to continue his praised performance in the season.
Taladua, on the other hand, scored nine of his 13 points in the first quarter alone and culminated his own double-double outing with 11 boards.
“Ibibigay ko ‘yung best ko sa team para magawa lahat, tsaka kailangan ko rin tulungan ‘yung mga teammate ko na apat para di lang sila ‘yung nagtatrabaho samin,” said Taladua.
The Knights, however, squandered a 46–38 halftime lead which saw the Chiefs outscored them at the end of the third period, 57–58.
But Rey Nambatac’s three-point play at the 8:19 mark of the fourth sparked a Letran run that barred Arellano to retake the lead. Nambatac erupted for 13 points in the final period (9/10 free throws) and finished an all-around game of 15 points, 12 rebounds, and five assists.
The win ended Letran’s back-to-back losses against San Beda and Jose Rizal University. Head coach Jeff Napa found momentum in the win especially with the team’s slow start to the season.
“Finally nakuha rin namin yung panalo coming off a two-game losing streak,” said Napa. “Hopefully magiging maganda yung turn around ulit basta magtrabaho ulit yung mga bata,” he added.
“Learn from improvement kasi sobrang bata nung team so nag-aadjust pa lahat. Hopefully maging madali sa kanila yung adjustment, yung learning para maging pabor para samin,” Napa emphasized.
Jerrick Balanza added 12 points for the Knights, while JP Calvo and Bong Quinto chipped in 9 and 8, respectively.
It’s Letran’s second win in its first five games. The team will face College of St. Benilde on Thursday at the Letran Gym for the continuation of NCAA On Tour.