UNIVERSITY of San Carlos (USC) Warriors and University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Panthers advanced to the finals after winning their respective semifinal matches in the 1st City of Naga Inter-Collegiate Basketball Tournament last Sunday, March 10, at the Enan Chiong Activity Center in Naga City.
RR Cauba had a huge night with 29 points, while Karl Langahin had 10 to lead the Panthers to a 75-69 win over University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) Jaguars.
The Panthers led by 10 points or more in almost all four quarters. But with three straight fastbreak plays by John Ubalde with the help of Cris Galvez, Jay Deiparine and import Segamars Ewenike, the Jaguars threatened the Panthers’ lead. It was cut down to just a single point, 70-69, with 1:05 left.
An undergoal stab by Cauba, after a timeout, extended USJ-R’s lead to three, 72-69, with 36 seconds remaining.
The Jaguars of coach Leodie Garcia had a chance to tie it but they lost the crucial possession, which in turn was converted to a three-pointer by USPF that sealed the win.
Ubalde had 19 points for USJ-R, while Elmer Echavez added 13.
The Warriors, on the other hand, crushed University of Cebu (UC) Webmasters, 93-77, in the other semifinal game.
USC had an early 29-9 rally and from then on they never looked back.
Kurt Trangia led USC with 23 markers, Jules Langres chipped in 15, while Roosevelt Jelianggao and Froilan Mangubat added 14 each.
Shane Menina had a game-high 28 points for UC, while Tristan Albina and Paul Galinato scored 13 and 10, respectively. (EKA with JBM of SuperBalita)