No more Cebu champ as Magis Eagles ousted
After dominating the Visayas for nearly a decade, Cebu finally relinquished their stranglehold of the crown in the Passerelle division of the Milo-backed BEST Tournament after the Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu Magis Eagles got eliminated from title-contention with two straight losses in the first day of the competition yesterday at the University of St. La Salle in Bacolod.
The Magis Eagles started the day on a disastrous note as they got routed by Sun Yat Sen, 60-74, behind the red-hot shooting of Joshua Lopez, who drilled in six three-pointers and totalled 20 points.
Then, in the evening, Ateneo de Cebu’s fate got sealed with a heartbreaking, 60-64 loss to Bacolod Tay Tung High School.
Before yesterday, Cebu has dominated the Visayas finals of this competition, winning every single crown since 2008 and even winning the national crown thrice in the said stretch.
But the streak finally came to an end on Saturday evening as Ateneo de Cebu could not execute down the stretch.
The Magis Eagles held the lead for the last time at 60-58, after a booming triple by Andrei Chua. But Tay Tung responded with one of their own to retake the driver’s seat, 61-60.
From there, Ateneo de Cebu crumbled, committing three passing errors in the last 18 seconds of the match to doom their chances of making a comeback. Tay Tung also made several pressure-packed free throws in the waning seconds to claim the victory, their second in as many games.
Meanwhile, the University of the Visayas (UV), Cebu’s best bet in the Small Basketeers of the Philippines (SBP) class, had an up and down day as they emerged with a 1-1 win-loss record after the first day. First, the Baby Lancers got shut down by Ateneo de Iloilo when it mattered most to fall, 31-40. But they redeemed themselves later in the day with a 43-30 win over St. John’s Institute.
UV will be taking on the Colegio de la Purisima Concepcion of Roxas today with a win getting the Cebu team a spot in the championship round.
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