Will Gozum drops career-high 34 as St. Benilde routs JRU

Will Gozum dropped a career-high performance of 34 points and led College of St. Benilde past the returning Jose Rizal University with a 92-79 win in the second round of the NCAA Season 98 men's basketball tournament Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the Filoil EcoOil Centre in San Juan City.

Will Gozum of the College of St. Benilde Blazers (NCAA/GMA)

Gozum, scoring on an efficient 13-of-17 shooting from the field along with two triples, also grabbed eight rebounds and had two blocks and two steals to provide the spark for the Blazers, who remained as the league-leaders with a 9-2 record.

CSB's gain was JRU's loss as the Blazers also ended the five-game win streak of the Heavy Bombers, who after more than two weeks, returned to action following a couple of postponed games due to health and safety protocol.

The Blazers also doused the 26-point and six-rebound outing of Ry Dela Rosa, who paced the Bombers alongside John Amores and Joshua Guiab.

Miggy Corteza also contributed 13 points and five rebounds while Migs Oczon also did it all for St. Benilde with 12 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists.

It was all Gozum on the Blazers' side in the first half where he posted 23 points, 14 coming from the second period alone, before the Bombers showed resistance to make it a tight ball game heading into the next 20 minutes, 45-43.

CSB slowly put some distance beginning the third quarter as it outscored JRU, 22-15, with Gozum still leading the men in green and white.

The Blazers rode on the momentum they gained heading into the payoff period with a 67-58 lead before the likes of Oczon and Corteza joined in the fray to put the finishing touches.

The Bombers, however, were not about to give up without a fight and held on behind the efforts of Dela Rosa, who caught fire and drained a total of six triples out of his 10 attempts.

But Dela Rosa's fiery output wasn't enough for JRU alone as CSB maintained its composure and still led by as many as 11 points, 90-79, heading into the final minute.

The lead proved to be too much for the Bombers to deal with as Corteza iced the game with a pair of free throws, sending JRU crashing to a 5-3 record.

Meanwhile, Amores finished with 19 points while Guiab had 12 points and eight rebounds for the Bombers, who, prior to their clash with the Blazers, last saw action last Oct. 7 with a win against the Lyceum Pirates.

The Scores:

CSB 92 -- Gozum 34, Corteza 13, Oczon 12, Pasturan 10, Sumabat 9, Sangco 4, Carlos 4, Cullar 2, Nayve 2, Mara 2, Flores 0, Dimayuga 0.

JRU 79 -- Dela Rosa 26, Amores 19, Guiab 12, Medina 7, Miranda 6, Sy 4, Gonzales 3, Dionisio 2, Joson 0, De Jesus 0, Tan 0, Famaranco 0.

Quarters: 20-19, 45-43, 67-58, 92-79.