THE University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Panthers debuted in style, winning over the Cebu Roosevelt Memorial Colleges (CRMC) Mustangs, 74-65, in the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) Season 23 collegiate basketball tournament on Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2023 at the Cebu Coliseum.
USPF is looking to bounce back this season after a disappointing finish last season. Last season saw the Panthers finish as the second seed after the elimination round. However, they failed to make it into the finals after getting beaten twice by the University of Cebu in the Final Four.
Showing a renewed commitment to winning it all, the veteran-laden USPF squad got 16 points from Alje Mendez, while Peter Peteros chipped in 11 markers.
The Panthers also showed their savvy, rallying from a 48-38 halftime deficit to take a 61-59 lead heading to the fourth.
Keaton Taburnal led the Mustangs with 17 points.
In the high school division, the University of Cebu Lapu-Lapu Mandaue (UCLM) Webmasters bested the University of the Visayas Baby Lancers, 63-61.
Revo Lao led UCLM with 14 points, while Geo Lumagod and Kian Luchavez had 12 markers apiece. / JNP