USJ-R Jaguars narrowly beat UP Cebu to claim win no. 4
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) Jaguars now sit comfortably on top of the men’s basketball standings of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation, Inc. (CESAFI) Season 23.
This after, the Jaguars prevailed over the gutsy University of the Philippines (UP) Cebu Fighting Maroons, 51-47, on Sunday evening, October 8, 2023, at the Cebu Coliseum.
The Jaguars of head coach Melo Banua notched their fourth victory while maintaining their immaculate record.
The Fighting Maroons of head coach Rommel Rasmo remain winless after four games.
However, it was a tooth-and-nail battle between the two teams. UP didn’t let up from the get-go, giving the Jaguars a difficult time building a huge lead.
The Jaguars were just one point ahead, 22-21, in halftime and finished the third period with a three-point cushion, 34-31.
It was until the final period when the Jaguars momentarily pulled away with a 12-point cushion, 51-39, from the efforts of Klein Gordillo who initiated a 17-8 run with his back-to-back baskets. He also received help from eventual player of the game Elmer Echavez and team captain Justine Langres.
Not to be outfought, the Fighting Maroons erased the double-digit by capitalizing on the Jaguars’ unforced errors.
JZ Dizon led UP Cebu’s failed comeback after nailing a trey that cut the lead to just single-digit, 42-51, also with help from AJ Delos Reyes who also made a triple with less than a minute remaining in the game.
Dizon pulled UP Cebu within four points, 47-51 after he was fouled by Karl Cabulao.
Still, UP Cebu’s comeback was a little too late to turn the game as there was less than 20 seconds left in the game which ultimately concluded in their defeat.
Echavez scored 17 points to spearhead USJ-R, while Langres added 11 markers. Klein Gordillo and Jake Engbino combined for 14 points for the Jaguars.
Dizon had 12 points, while Delos Reyes and Harvey Jaye Caño combined for 12 points in UP Cebu’s losing efforts. / dcb
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