NCAA: How the Final Four-bound teams could wind up with twice-to-beat bonus

Letran and St. Benilde's star big men jostle for position. –NCAA PHOTO

Letran and St. Benilde’s star big men jostle for position. –NCAA PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—The NCAA Season 98 Final Four picture remains still blurry but the complications will rely on several scenarios.

Currently, St. Benilde is tied with defending champion Letran at the first spot with an identical record of 13-4.

Should both teams continue to tie records by the end of the elimination round, the Knights will stay as the top seed with a “win-over-the-other” advantage as they beat the Blazers twice in the eliminations.

Either way, St. Benilde has clinched at least a playoff for a twice-to-beat advantage with its win over Arellano on Sunday, 83-73.

The Blazers face San Beda, which is currently third in the standings, on Tuesday in the final game of the eliminations.

Should the Red Lions (12-5) lose, they would drop to fourth place, elevating Lyceum (12-6) in the third spot, also by the virtue of “win-over-the-other.” The Pirates swept San Beda in the eliminations, 2-0.

If the Red Lions win, they would tie with the Blazers at 13-5, prompting a rubber match for the twice-to-beat advantage. Regardless of the result of that game, they will continue to face off in the Final Four with Lyceum staying at the bottom, facing the Knights.

Meanwhile, all the Knights need to do is win against Jose Rizal University to secure the top seed.

But if Letran ties with both Benilde and San Beda at 13-5, the quotient system will be used to determine the first, second and third seed.

While the playoffs scenario may still be unclear, Blazer Robi Nayve hopes they could face Lyceum in the Final Four armed with the win-once advantage.

“Actually, we’re looking forward to facing Lyceum. Since we think we would have higher chances if we face them, but if ever, our team is capable of something,” Nayve said after finishing with 17 points in Sunday’s game.

The Blazers beat the Pirates twice in eliminations.

“If we play Lyceum, that means we beat San Beda. That’s our goal,” coach Charles Tiu explained.

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