By Jonas N. Panerio |January 08,2018 - 10:34 PM

John Abad of the Cebu Landmasters-Bogo City splits the UC-M. Lhuillier defense for an open layup.

Cebu Landmasters-Bogo City loses big lead but hangs on to beat UC-M.Lhuillier

Games today:
Cebu Coliseum
4:30 p.m. – UV/SG-ARQ vs Cebu Landmasters
6 p.m. – USJ-R vs Marinerong Pilipino

The Cebu Landmasters-Bogo City withstood the furious comeback attempt by the University of Cebu-M. Lhuillier to emerge victorious, 79-71, in the opening game of the Cebu City Sinulog Cup Basketball Invitational yesterday at the Cebu Coliseum.

In the second game, the Marinerong Pilipino routed the reigning Cesafi champions University of the Visayas, 90-70.

Behind a scintillating first half that saw former PBA sentinel Jojo Tangkay sink a three-pointer from past halfcourt at the halftime buzzer and a solid third period surge, the Landmasters managed to establish a 20-point lead but had fight off a late rally by the Webmasters to pull off the victory.

Landmasters head coach Junthy Valenzuela admitted that complacency crept into the heads of his players.

“We were up big and the players relaxed a little. Fortunately, we had veterans who had been in this situation before and knew what to do down the stretch,” said Valenzuela, who is making his coaching comeback after stepping away from the head coaching position of the University of San Carlos Warriors a few years ago.

Bogo City held a 55-35 at one point in the third but the never-say-die UC refused to lay down and got right back into the ballgame behind the hot outside shooting of Justine Dacalos and the inside dominance of Cameroonian Frederick Elombi, whose layup with 1:39 to go in the fourth pulled UC to within three, 71-74.

The veteran-laden Landmasters, however, did not blink.

Tangkay, a veteran of many basketball wars all across the country, came off a screen and rose up to drain a mid-range jumper to put the Landmasters up by five, 76-71, with 1:02 left.

Travis Mantua and John Reel Saycon then finished the Webmasters off with three makes from the charity stripe.

Former Far Eastern University Tamaraw Prince Orizu terrorized UC’s interior defense all-game long and finished with a double-double of 20 points and 10 rebounds for the winning team.

Ferdinand Lusdoc added 14 while Tangkay finished with 12 markers.

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