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Cesafi: USPF pulls off come-from-behind win against Benedicto College

By: Dale Rosal - CDN Digital | October 11,2023 - 07:00 AM

USPF Cesadi

USP-F Panthers players and coaching staff pose for a group photo after beating Benedicto College in come-from-behind fashion. CDN Digital photo | Glendale Rosal

CEBU CITY, Philippines—The University of Southern Philippines-Foundation (USPF) Panthers remained unbeaten in the Cesafi men’s basketball tournament, following a 74-65 come-from-behind victory against the Benedicto College Cheetahs on Tuesday, October 10, 2023, at the Cebu Coliseum.

The Panthers stormed back from a 10-point deficit in the third period to bag their third straight win, while remaining undefeated in the Cesafi tournament. 

Benedicto College, meanwhile, suffered its second defeat in three games. 

READ MORE: CEC Dragons maul CBSAA Trailblazers in Cesafi high school cage wars

Peter John Peteros continued to display his full potential in his rookie year in college after leading the Panthers with  20 points, 12 of which he made in the  second half. 

Veteran guards Neon Chavez and Christian Jay Alilin were also both instrumental in USPF’s huge comeback win, scoring 17 and 11 points, respectively. 

Serge Gabines had 17 points, while Kenneth Babalcon added 10 points for the Cheetahs. 

Strong start for Benedicto

Benedicto College took off to a hot start and managed to take a 10-point lead at 49-39, midway through the third period.

The Cheetahs used their size and excellent passing to establish a comfortable lead. 

But the Cheetahs weren’t able to hold on to that lead. 

USPF slowly chipped away the lead, cutting it down to five, 50-55, going into the final canto, behind the efforts of Peteros and Alje Mendez.

But Benedicto College was still able to stretch its lead back to nine, 59-50. 

Despite the poor shooting and several turnovers, the Panthers of head coach Alan Cabatingan remained composed. Their vast experience of being in this of situation enabled them to turn the game around to their favor. 

Peteros and Chavez sank back-to-back baskets to slice the deficit to just 54-59, midway through the final period. 

Both teams then threw haymakers at each other until the Panthers pulled themselves within one possession, 61-63, courtesy of Mendez’s putback from a turnover. 

Alilin’s basket from a steal with 2:30 remaining tied the game at 63-all. 

Benedicto College couldn’t put up decent shots and committed crucial turnovers.

Alilin and Chavez completed the comeback with back-to-back treys, putting USP-F ahead, 69-63, for the first time in the game. 

Benedicto would not recover from that until the final buzzer. 



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TAGS: basketball, Cebu

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