K&L Marketing, EGS Aneda Builders face off in winner-take-all championship match tonight
CEBU CITY, Philippines— The K&L Marketing and the EGS Aneda Builders forged a winner-take-all championship match in the Chooks-to-Go Sinulog Cup 2023 Basketball Tournament by eliminating their respective foes in the fiercely-fought semifinals on Sunday night, January 22, at the Cebu Coliseum.
The K&L Marketing of veteran coach Albert Alocillo staged a huge upset by eliminating the heavily-favored DH25-Rock Uniform Solutions (RUS) of Cebu City Councilor Dondon Hontiveros, 82-78, in the first semifinal match last night.
Meanwhile, EGS Aneda Builders of head coach Kurt Vanguardia narrowly defeated the visiting United Negros Basketball League (UNBL) All-Stars of Bacolod, 71-69.
The championship match between K&L and EGS is scheduled at 6:30 p.m. tonight at the same venue, while the battle for third featuring DH25-RUS and UNBL is at 5 p.m.
Jan Patrick Cabahug and William McAloney’s tandem on the floor proved to be the key for K&L’s victory against Hontiveros’ DH25-RUS. This as McAloney dropped 21 points with 14 rebounds, two assists, and two steals.
Cabahug had 23 points, six rebounds, and two assists. Teammates Fletcher Galvez and Harold Cortes each scored 11 points.
On the other hand, Ice Blanco Hontiveros and Shaq Imperial each scored 15 for DH25-RUS, while Jaybie Mantilla had 12 markers.
DH25-RUS played without its top scorers Reed Juntilla, Jonel Bonganciso and Fritz Menguito, whom Hontiveros previously announced to play for them last Saturday after the eliminations.
“Dako kaayo ug advantage wala ilang main players, nag adjust sad mi. Ang ilang mga smalls among gikuha sa defense sa fourth quarter para dili sila maka adjust ug balik. Pero nag expect mi ug tight game gyud,” said Alocillo.
“Ang akong nakita sa team kay nagkakuyog, nag ka gel nami ug maayo. Everyone begins to start to submit in the system. Usahay mo time-out ko kay mag isolation sila usahay. Among preparation kay mental and physical kay paspas ang duwa, ang offense ug defense mabasa ra namo ang ilahang atake sa duwa.”
Without their frontliners, DH25-RUS saw themselves trailing in the second half. However, they managed to cut the multiple-possession lead to tie the game at 77-all from Hontiveros’ triple with two minutes remaining in the game.
However, Cortes quickly answered with his own three to put back K&L ahead,80-77.
Blanco managed to cut the lead to just two, 78-80, after splitting his free throws with a minute left.
DH25-RUS had a good chance to grab the lead, but Blanco missed a triple with 30 seconds remaining. Worse, Hontiveros was fouled out of the game after committing a foul to prevent Eloy Poligrates from scoring a breakaway layup.
Poligrates went on splitting his free throws, 81-78.
With 21 seconds remaining, Blanco secured a defensive rebound, but committed a crucial turnover, forcing them to foul to prolong the game.
McAloney then split his free throws, 82-78, to hammer the last nail in the coffin.
READY FOR THE CHAMPIONSHIP
For his part, Vanguardia said that he’s confident even before the tournament started because of his stacked roster.
However, UNBL put on a good fight in their semifinal match.
John Galinato delivered another stellar performance by dropping 19 markers with three rebounds, and two assists. Former UV Green Lancers team captain Ted Saga chipped in 17 points, while ex-UC Webmaster Justine Dacalos had 12 points.
UNBL’s Ceb Albaza had 20 points and Marck Cruz with 13.
“Bisan one week ra among preparation, before gasugod ang tournament, dili pa gyud mi kumpleto sa practice, confident ra ko nga makasulod mi sa finals tungod sad sa among line-up,” said Vanguardia.
The champion team tonight will take home P150,000 while the second runner-up will get P75,000. The third placer will receive P50,000 and P30,000 for the fourth placer, while P15,000 awaits the rest of the competing teams.
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