UCLHS wins NBTC regionals-A A +A
Monday, February 10, 2014
UNIVERSITY of the Cordilleras Laboratory High School Jaguars ambushed the visiting La Union National High School squad to claim the championship crown in the regional finals of the NBTC Elite D-League at the UC gym on a Saturday afternoon.
The eventual Northern Luzon champs scored a one-sided contest to bag the victory, 97-92, of the tournament backed by MVP Sports Foundation and Sea Oil.
Robert Castro led UCLHS with his 26 points, six steals, three assists and one rebound, while teammate and center Jonathan Ballon racked the boards with his double-double record scoring ten points, with 18 rebounds.
The junior Jaguars pounced on the visiting LUNHS after stretching their largest lead of 14 points, 71-57, closing the third canto of the ballgame as Castro, Ballon, and John Ric Buenaventura sets the mood for UCLHS with their 18 combined points.
But LUNHS did not just let the game slip away as brothers Rommel Vincent and Ronald Stephen Dolente, with Mark Anthony Balsito chipped in 26 points that narrowed the gap into four, 93-89, with 13.8 remaining in the fourth quarter.
UCLHS then stepped-up their defense but it was Ronald Stephen who sparked hope for the visiting LUNHS as he dropped a fastbreak and a free-throw that cut the junior Jaguars lead into three, 95-92, with 4 ticks left before the final buzzer.
LUNHS tried to hold grip of the home-playing team but it was a little too late as Christian Valdez added two more free throws that sealed the deal for UCLHS.
“We are all happy for this victory, we came in prepared and that was simply the strategy for this game, to dominate and take control,” said UCLHS head coach Jennifer Dindin.
Dindin said they will try to have a better preparation and hopefully a better finish in the national championship.
“Right now we will try to focus and improve the level of play that we have so at least we can finish better come the nationals in manila,” said Dindin.
“Hopefully we will go there more ready unlike the previous time that we instantly travelled to compete there after winning the regionals,” Dindin closed.
Carl Banate, Christian Valdez, and Mark David NgFung chipped in 17 points for UCLHS to keep the junior Jaguars in front at the close of the first-half.
Balsito scored a game high for LUNHS with 28 points, while Rommel and Ronald generated 26 points apiece.
UCLHS will compete for the NBTC Elite D-League National crown against other secondary schools from all-over the country this comingMarch 6 in Manila.
Included in the UCLHS Jaguars coaching staff are Rommillie Gonzales and Ulyses Lawini.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on February 11, 2014.