SWU-Phinma bags first-ever Partner’s Cup crown

By: Jonas Rey N. Panerio August 04,2019 - 09:44 PM

The SWU-Phinma Cobras celebrate their title victory in the 2019 Cesafi Partner’s Cup. CDNDigital photo | Jonas Rey N. Panerio

Cebu City, Philippines—The Southwestern University (SWU)-Phinma Cobras made it known that they are a team to be reckoned with in the Cesafi as they captured the Partner’s Cup championship with a 74-65 victory over the reigning champions ARQ-University of the Visayas (UV) Green Lancers on Sunday, August 4, 2019, at the Cebu Coliseum.

SWU-Phinma’s come-from-behind win gave them a 2-0 sweep of UV, to give them their first-ever Partner’s Cup title.

And the Cobras did it in rousing fashion, uncorking a massive 18-4 run in the fourth period to overhaul a five-point deficit and complete the stunning win.

Unlike their lopsided win in Game 1, where they sizzled from the get-go and cruised to the finish line, the Cobras’ mettle was severely tested by the Green Lancers, who led, 61-56, after a deuce by Gileant Delator.

SWU-Phinma suddenly found its second wind and used it to rattle off eight straight points sparked by baskets by Dyll Roncal, Red Cachuela and Senegalese wingman Lamine Thiam to seize the lead, 64-61, with 2:45 remaining.

Two free throws by Lass Coulibally broke UV’s drought but SWU-Phinma was relentless, scoring five straight capped off by a beautiful alley-oop basket by Cachuela off a great feed by William Polican to push the Cobras ahead, 69-63, with 56.9 seconds to go.

A basket by Ted Saga gave the Green Lancers a sliver of hope but free throws by Shaquille Imperial and a putback by Thiam secured the morale-boosting victory for SWU-Phinma.

Thiam, who was declared as the Partner’s Cup MVP, led SWU-Phinma with 23 points while Cachuela added 12. Imperial and Polican had 11 and 10 points, respectively.

UV got 14 points each from Delator and Coulibally and little else from the rest of the team. /bmjo

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