By: Jonas Rey N. Panerio June 14,2018 - 10:23 PM

The Organique California-University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Panthers served notice of their intentions for the preseason crown as they trounced the Southwestern University (SWU)-Phinma Cobras, 79-54, in the Cesafi Partner’s Cup yesterday at the Cebu Coliseum.

Now at full strength with the return of foreign player Rich Managor, who missed nearly all games of last season due to a torn ACL, the Panthers flaunted their strength and depth and led by as many as 26 late in the fourth and cruised to the dominant win.

The loss was the Cobras’ second in as many games after losing to the University of Cebu (UC) in their opening game.

RR Cauba led the way for the Panthers with 15 points while Mhike Patalinghug added 14.

The Panthers led by a scant five points, 18-13, after the first period but surged ahead, 36-22, at halftime behind a 13-5 spurt that was capped off by a long three-pointer from veteran forward Roy Quiachon.

USPF continued its onslaught in the third, which it started with a 10-3 blast sparked by transition buckets from Patalinghug to erect a 46-25 lead.

SWU-Phinma battled right back and trimmed the deficit to 10, 39-49, as Reeve Ugsang, Edmundo Bayhonan and Dominic de Lara all found their groove.

But the Panthers bared their fans once again behind Cauba, who punched in two tough baskets to raise their lead back to 57-41, heading to the last canto.

Three-pointers by Karl Langahin and Patalinghug early in the fourth settled the game’s outcome as it put them ahead, 73-47.

In the high school division, USPF routed the Cebu Eastern College Dragons, 84-60, for their second win in a row.

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