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JRU boosts Final 4 bid as Mapua forfeits match.

Byline: Cedelf P. Tupas

Jose Rizal U's Final Four bid in the 90th NCAA basketball tournament received another shot in the arm following the decision of Mapua to again forfeit its match today against the Heavy Bombers due to suspension and injuries to several players.

The Heavy Bombers need only to show up at 9 a.m. at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan to secure their 11th win and gain a tie with the Perpetual Help Altas at third spot in one of the league's tightest Final Four races in years.

Out of the Final Four for the first time since 2010, Letran hopes to finish the season with a flourish as it battles Lyceum at 1 p.m.

The Knights won via forfeiture over the Cardinals last Monday. They will be facing a Lyceum team that has won only one of its last seven games.

The Cardinals have seven eligible players only due to suspension as a result of a benchclearing brawl with the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals recently. But with three of them sidelined by injuries, Mapua's NCAA Mancom representative Melchor Divina said they are forced to forfeit due to lack of players.

"As much as we want to play, we only have four players, so we are forfeiting our game against Jose Rizal," said Divina, pointing out that only Joseph Eriobu, Jesse Saitanan, Jeson Cantos and Jerome Canaynay were fit to play for the Cardinals.

Mapua guard CJ Isit is still sidelined by a fractured right cheek bone he sustained from a the punch thrown by EAC's John Tayongtong at the height of the melee on Sept. 22.

Ronnel Villasenor and Darrel Magsigay were already eligible after serving a onegame ban in the game against Letran. But the two players are also both nursing injuries.

The brawl has impacted on the league standings with EAC and Mapua already forced to forfeit its games after the melee.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:Oct 3, 2014
Words:321
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