Explorers book semis ticket in VisMin Super Cup
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Pagadian Explorers advanced to the semifinals of the 2021 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup Mindanao leg after finishing off the Kapatagan Buffalo Braves, 87-76, in their do-or-die showdown on Friday evening at the Pagadian City gymnasium, in Zamboanga del Sur.
The Explorers bounced back strong after losing their twice-to-beat advantage in the first game against Kapatagan on Thursday.
The victory earned them the semifinals berth where they will meet the fourth seed Petra Cement-Roxas Vanguards in a best-of-three series starting Sunday, August 1 at 4 p.m.
“Nag step up talaga ‘yung mga players after noong talo namin yesterday. After last night, sobrang down nila pero sabi ko we’re still blessed kasi we still have one game para bumawi,” said Pagadian head coach Harold Sta. Cruz.
Pagadian’s scoring machine Rich Guinitaran scored 22 points along with 11 rebounds, five assists, two steals, and two blocks to overcome his dismal performance last Thursday.
Von Dechos sank four triples on his way to 16 points, while Keanu Caballero just missed a double-double with 11 points, nine assists, and five rebounds.
Ryan Costelo finished with 18 points, eight rebounds, seven assists in the losing cause. Teytey Teodoro topscored with 19 points.
Renz Palma, Kapatagan’s top gun, was held to just two points in the second half, ending with 10 points. Marlon Monte, the Braves’ leading scorer in the tournament, missed all of his four attempts from the field, tallying just four points all from the charity stripe.
Pagadian 87 – Guinitaran 22, Dechos 16, Caballero 11, Serrano 9, Manalo 8, Acaylar 8, Demigaya 4, Benitez 4, Pamaran 2, Diva 2, Quilo 1, Saludsod 0, Quimaldo 0, Bautista 0.
Kapatagan 76 – Teodoro 19, Costelo 18, Palma 10, Ng Sang 6, Inigo 5, Doroteo 4, Monte 4, Siarot 3, Acain 3, Alanes 2, Mandreza 2, Sollano 0.
Quarterscores: 22-17, 44-37, 61-64, 87-76. /rcg
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