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CENTRO Escolar University pulled off the biggest upset of the tournament so far, as they took down Wangs Basketball-Letran in the 2022 PBA D-League Aspirants Cup on Thursday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
Former Ateneo de Cebu guard Franz Diaz had quite the ballgame as he fired in 22 points on 3-of-6 shooting from three. He also added seven rebounds and two steals, but most importantly, he converted the game-sealing free throws to complete the upset and push his side to an even 3-3 record.
"Malaking bagay talaga itong panalo. In-expect namin talaga tambakan kami pero we adjusted at yung players ayaw patalo," said coach Chico Manabat.
Jerome Santos also posted key numbers with 14 points, four assists, and three boards, while Nigerian big man Victor played solid basketball with 13 points, five rebounds, three blocks, and two steals.
Defense was on-point for CEU, keeping Wangs-Letran scoreless from the 1:19 mark of the third cantp as it raced to a 72-56 lead with 4:02 left on the clock.
The Knights tried to mount a late rally with Kurt Reyson making it a four-point game, 79-75, with 19.4 seconds remaining, but Diaz canned the crucial freebies in the end game to stave off the rally.
Brent Paraiso powered Wangs-Letran with 20 points on 5-of-11 shooting from deep, on top of seven rebounds, three assists, and three blocks but his side slid to 3-2 after this second straight loss.