THE University of the Visayas (UV) Baby Lancers survived the third-quarter surge of the University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) Baby Jaguars before scoring a 78-56 win at the end of the elimination round of the 2016 Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) high school basketball tournament at the Cebu Coliseum last night.
In the college game, the USJ-R Jaguars survived a thrilling match that saw a sea-saw battle for the lead in the final minute to beat the University of Cebu Webmasters, 71-67 decision to snatch the second place of the seniors standings.
UC was in a good position to win the match, but a turnover in the final 10 seconds of the game led to the conventional three-point play by Miguel Gastador at the 8.3 seconds that sealed the win, which was its seventh win in 10 games.
USJR had a nine-point lead, 59-50, before Justin Dacalos rallied UC including a triple in the 1:48 mark of the third of the final period that evened the game at 61.
Both teams traded baskets before USJ-R withered under the end-game explosion of Dacalos who scored the game-high 28 points.
Ralph Jude Dinolan topscored for USJ-R with 20 points to go with nine rebounds and Gastador had 11 points.
Peter Paul Codilla was the other UC player to finish in double-digits with 10 points.
UV played without its leading scorer Raul Jancork Cabahug who was sidelined due to a thigh injury, but it did not dampen the spirits of the Baby Lancers who bucked a 12-0 start with spirited mid-period spurts.
The Baby Lancers outscored USJ-R 24-7 since then and never looked back to formally clinch the second automatic semifinal seat that will give them at least another week to prepare and more days for Cabahug to recuperate from his injury.
UV then held USJ-R to just eight points in the second to post a 21-point lead by the half.
The Baby Jaguars had their momentum when their trapping defense gave UV a scare and they made it as far as 42-53.
However, UV managed to stay afloat since USJ-R failed to sink their three-point attempts. The Baby Jaguars only had one trey made out of 19 attempts.
Ivan Maata stepped up huge as he scored 12 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, Biern Laurente topscored UV with 19 points, Luis Escobar and Jay Paraldo contributed 10 points each as the Baby Lancers finished the elimination games with 7-2 card, Renz Ortiz had 14 points, Phil Ranara and Dave Ando made 11 points, respectively, for USJ-R.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 21, 2016.
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