MAYOR Oscar Moreno’s veteran stalwart Emmanuel Mugot brings his 3-point act in the Auto Planet-Dyno Cup basketball with immediate success.
Already a sensation in his last two stints, the 49-year-old Mugot went berserk in the fourth and final quarter as the Stronghold White Pythons shocked the Bajao Jaguars, 84-69 on Tuesday night at Barangay 24’s covered court here to secure a place in the top 4.
Depending on the results of the last few games left in the single elimination round, the White Pythons of Rey Asuncion and Mel Heruela could even land in the top 2 –with a twice-to-beat advantage—when the exciting Dyno Cup enters its knockout phase next week.
FS Car Care Display Eagles of Edgar Gustilo and Totsie Daitol virtually collared the top spot with an unbeaten slate in the eight-team field.
“It’s still a big wonder that we now improved at 4-3 after flirting elimination with a 1-3 start. Who knows that we might get into the finals again after winning the Tabor Cup last season,” said Asuncion, the White Pythons’ 66-year-old leader.
And the Pythons’ three-game roll can be readily attributed to the hot hands of Heruela’s acquisition from the August body of Misamis Oriental province.
While scoring leader Arman Bajao and Asuncion combined early for seven 3-pointers, it was Mugot’s 13-point fourth quarter performance laced with three booming treys that eventually doused cold water to the hard-fighting Jaguars’ late uprising.
Trailing by 16 at the end of the third quarter, the Jaguars banked on coach Ulysses Romulo’s offensive ploy of Tata Bajao, Injie Rivera, Bahian and Arbas to orchestrate a tension-building 8-0 run.
But when the goings get better for the spirited Jaguars came Mugot’s 3-point bombing to spoil it all.
“Buwenas gyod ilang tandem ni sir Mel. Naluyahan sila (Jaguars) sa tulo ka sunod-sunod nga 3-pointer ni Kag. Mugot,” said Asuncion who was thankful that starting center Mon Collera finally showed up after missing the Pythons’ last two games.
Dyno Green Tigers earlier turned down the challenge of Bongcawil Bulls, 90-73 with Arquita exploding for a game high 33 points and the troika of Amparo, Docdoc and Abrena backing him with 15, 12 and 10 markers each.
Club president Fred Pimentel, however, said the win will not ensure yet the Tigers’ entry in the knockout round.
“Tulo man ang nag tie sa last slot for the next round. So, naa gyod sa Dyno Tigers, Bajao Jaguars ug Red Lions ang matagak uban sa winless nga Bongcawil Bulls,” Pimentel told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro.
Dyno Tigers 90—Arquita 33, Amparo 15, Docdoc 12, Madera 9, Sy Sr. 3, Mabulay 2, Laranjo 0, Cadiz 0, Alban 0, Valdehueza 0.
Bongcawil Bulls 73—Bongcawil 29, Ednay 16, Pajo 15, Legaspi 6, Vacalares 4, Aclao 0, Ligtas 0, Bartolome 0, Nangcas 0, Reyes 0, Riña 0, Yu 0, Buhion 0.
Stronghold Pythons 84—Mugot 24, Bajao A. 23, Asuncion 12, Artajo 7, Collera 6, Salgados LJ 4, Tapdasan 4, Salgados L. 2, Sacabin 2, Heruela 0, Laput 0.
Bajao Jaguars 69—Bajao T. 18, Bahian 17, Rivera 15, Arbas 13, Alburo 4, Febrero 2, Romulo 0, Edrolin 0, Sumampong 0, Dumaya 0, Maquilan 0, Josue 0.