Cesafi men's semifinals

UC confident going into do-or-die game against UV

By: Brian J. Ochoa - CDN Digital | November 15,2019 - 08:37 PM

UC’s Tosh Sesay and Shane Menina defend a driving UV player in their semifinal game last Thursday, November 14, 2019, at the Cebu Coliseum. | CDN Digital photo | Doris Mae Mondragon

CEBU CITY, Philippines—Manhandled the last time around, the University of Cebu (UC) finds itself in a situation not every Cebu basketball team would want to be in: In a do-or-die game against the defending Cesafi men’s basketball champion University of the Visayas (UV). 

The Webmasters lost its twice-to-beat edge in the semifinals after suffering an 81-62 loss to the 13-time champions Green Lancers on Thursday night, November 14, 2019.

Read: UV forces rubbermatch with UC

The loss meant both teams would have to meet again on Saturday, November 16, 2019, at the Cebu Coliseum for the right to advance to the finals, where Southwestern University (SWU)-Phinma awaits.

The Cobras advanced after ousting the University of San Carlos on Tuesday, November 12, 2019, in their own semifinal affair.

Read: SWU-Phinma is back in the Cesafi finals

Despite being pushed to a rubbermatch with the defending champions, UC lead assistant coach Rocky Alcoseba says the team remains confident about its chances of advancing to the finals.

“We are still confident to get the job done. It’s just a matter of [making] adjustments,” Alcoseba, the son of UC head coach Raul “Yayoy” Alcoseba said.

UC led early in the game and, although it gave up the lead, trailed by just seven, 36-29, at the end of the half.

One thing Alcoseba noticed was that the Webmasters weren’t at par with UV’s energy. 

 “We have to match the energy of UV [because] it’s win or go home,” Alcoseba said.

UC import Tosh Sesay believes the team simply had a bad day on Thursday, but he assures their fans that their morale is still high going into the rubbermatch.

“We are gonna bounce back hard,” he said.

UC team captain John Calvin Jabello agreed with Sesay.

“The loss was disappointing, but it hasn’t affected the morale of the team. We’re taking the loss as a chance to get better as a team and bounce back,” Jabello said.

“What we lacked last night was defense. They had a lot of offensive rebounds, which led to a lot of extra possessions for them,” he added.

UC wingman Darrell Shane Menina also noticed some shortcomings that he believed the team should improve on if it would want to advance to the championship round. 

“We have to play as a team because the last game, we played individually. That’s why we played badly,” Menina said.

Meanwhile, UV coach Gary Cortes, despite winning the game, says the rubbermatch is still anybody’s ball game.

“The one who blinks first, loses,” Cortes said, adding that he does feel his team has a bit of a momentum going into the all-important game.

UC’s high school team also tries to stave off elimination as it faces the University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) also in a do-or-die game before the college match up.

Game time is 2:30 p.m.

Read: USPF stuns UC in double overtime to send semis duel to do-or-die game

UC, the top ranked team after the eliminations, lost its twice-to-beat edge after losing last Tuesday./dbs

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TAGS: 2019, Alcoseba, basketball, Cesafi, college, Cortes, Do-or-die, Green Lancers, Jabello, menina, rubbermatch, SEMIFINALS, Sesay, UC, UV, Webmasters

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