Eagles vs Pythons in knockout tiff tonight

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Thursday, January 30, 2014


DEFENDING champion Stronghold White Pythons forced a do-or-die tonight with the top-seeded FS Car Care Display Eagles in semifinal round of the Auto Planet-Dyno Cup basketball at Barangay 24’s covered court here.

This, as the 2AB Scorpions of Engr. Arnel Baba closed out the other half of the crossover matches with a crushing 74-51 victory over the heavily-undermanned Elabram Red Lions to secure the first finals seat.

“Gamay lang bikil kon nagluya pa diretso goodbye na among team,” gasped Mel Heruela after Nicolai Quintos, Ric Noble, Edgar Gustilo and `Big Hair’ Siñel came up with a total of ten 3-point baskets to give the twice-to-beaten Eagles a 12-point lead midway of the third quarter.

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Quintos and Noble had 5 and 3 triples each in the Eagles’ biggest lead when the left-handed Arman Bajao, Mon `Spin’ Collera and Paul “Sakuragi’ Artajo conspired a searing rally in the fourth and final quarter to give the Pythons of playing coach Rey Asuncion another lease of life.

“Grabe ang pangigo’g tres sa ilang sentro (Quintos), but the White Pythons played with a big fighting heart,” the 66-year-old Asuncion said.

Collera, Bajao and Artajo finished the game with 19, 17 and 14 points each to counter the 20-point production of Quintos, plus the combined 30 of Daitol, Noble and Siñel. Although, it was Bajao’s three booming treys in the payoff period that crippled the Eagles’ wings.

In the first game, Marvin Neri and Airbut’z Butatil led the Scorpions to an easy win over the Red Lions.

“Gusto gyod `mi modaug, pero unsaon pito raman `mi nagdula,” a downhearted Solidum told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro.

Auto Planet Club president Fred Pimentel said an exhibition game will highlight the 8pm knockout match between the Eagles and the Pythons for the right to face the Scorpions in the best-of-3 finals.

The scores:

2AB Scorpions 74—Neri 19, Butatil 15, Ortiz 9, Cabatuan 8, Go 7, Redulla 6, Cid 2, Cagalawan 2, Baba 0.

Elabram Red Lions 51—Contemprati 14, Solidum 12, Levita 9, Pabilona 6, Wilkom 4, Sakiran 4, Butron 1, Balabag 0.

2nd game

Stronghold Pythons 77—Collera 19, Bajao 17, Artajo 14, Tapdasan 6, Salgados LJ 5, Mugot 5, Salgados L. 4, Sacabin 3, Asuncion 3, Heruela 2.

FS Car Care Eagles 69—Quintos 20, Daitol T. 13, Noble 9, Sinel 8, Gustilo 7, Enriquez 6, Laranjo 4, Daitol J. 2Gumpay 0, Fetaluero 0.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on January 30, 2014.

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