Santillan retains CESAFI dunk title; East wins All-Star game

Mars G. Alison
Santillan retains CESAFI dunk title; East wins All-Star game
UV Green Lancer Leonard Santillan won the dunk title while his teammate Francisco Arong won the 3-point shootout

CEBU CITY, Philippines – The University of the Visayas (UV) Green Lancers won big at the 15th CESAFI men’s basketball tournament All Star competitions with their small forward Leonard Santillan retaining his slam dunk title and shooting guard Francisco Arong clinching the 3-point shootout title Sunday, September 27 at the New Cebu Coliseum.

Arong, who was appropriately monickered as the “Machine Gun,” bested 16 other contestants including defending 3-point shootout title holder Antonio Tomas Pardo of the Southwestern University (SWU) Cobras.

After the eliminations, instead of the final 5, 7 hoopsters advanced to the finals due to a 5-way tie.

Victor Manuel Rabat of the University of San Carlos (USC) Warriors topped the eliminations with 15 points, followed by Pardo (14), Melvin Holper also of SWU (12), USC’s Kevin Oleodo (12), University of San Jose Recoletos (USJR) Jaguars Ralph Jude Dinolan (11) and UV’s Josue Segumpan Jr. (11) and Arong (11).

Arong took the title after shooting 15 points over Dinolan’s 8 points in the tiebreaker after both of them earned 13 points in the finals.

In the slam dunk contest, the 6-foot-5 inches tall Santillan earned a back-to-back slam dunk title after restaging what he did last season, leaping over 3 people for the jam which earned him 50 points on his second try for a total of 85 points. This despite nursing an ankle injury. 

His first try only earned him 35 points after he failed to sink the ball.

Finalists were given two tries with the scores accumulated for each try added and the highest scorer winning the title.

“I am thankful and happy because I prayed that my ankle would just be fine during the slam dunk. My family also prayed for me and with the support of my teammates and coaches, I was able to do it,” said Santillan when asked how it felt to have defended his title.

Santillan was joined in the finals by University of Cebu (UC) Webmasters Garciano Puerto Jr. who finished with 74 points with his alley-oop and USC’s Dolan Adlawan with 80 points on a throw ball and dunk.

Contestants, however, were not afforded to show their creative dunking styles and stunts as they were only given one try in the eliminations so instead of taking chances on an exhibition, they had to make sure the ball goes in so as to get high scores.

Those who didn’t make it past the eliminations were USJR’s Juan Miguel Gastador who had the crowd cheering with his throw ball and dunk except that the ball didn’t go in and he only scored 30 points, University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Panthers Kino Matthews Bajamunde (30), USC’s Charles Pepito (30) and UV’s Rey Anthony Suerte (31).

East rules West

The East teams of USJR coach Bong Pineda for the junior and UV coach Gary Cortez for the seniors dumped their respective opponents – the West teams of UC coach Jover Samonte for the juniors and USC coach Britt Reroma for the seniors.

The junior East team rode on the double-double performance of UV’s Raul Jancork Cabahug in thrashing the junior West team, 89-74.

Cabahug earned the most valuable player title with his 20 points and 11 rebounds. He also made one steal.

Cabahug was joined in the mythical five by Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu (SHS-AdC) Magis Eagles Travis Jelour Mantua and Jed Cedric Colonia, USPF’s Ain Obenza, who topscored for the West with 13 points, and Cebu Eastern College’s James Daniel Tempra.

In the seniors division, the East team was led by UV’s Jun Kent Manzo III in routing the West, 92-79.

Following his huge performance in their final eliminations assignment, Manzo continues to amaze with his 18 points as he made 8 of 12 field goals, 1 assists and 1 steal.

With Manzo in the mythical five are teammates Steve Cedrick Akomo and Alwin Aguirre, SWU’s Jan Michael Auditor and UC’s Garciano Puerto Jr.

Topscoring for the West was USJR’s Mark Louie Labares with 13 points.



CESAFI-East HS (89) – Cabahug 20, Gonzaga 12, Tempra 12, Mendez 8, Smith 7, J. Laurente 6, Ando 5, Chavez 4, B. Laurente 4, Pakanna 3, Amistoso 2, Teleron 2, Membrano 2, Dela Cruz 2, Alforque 0.

CESAFI-West HS (74) – Obenza 13, Mantua 9, Abejo 8, Gabisan 7, Abinuman 7, Mangubat 6, Cuyos 6, Pastor 4, Berezo 4, Colonia 3, Calumpang 3, Peligrino 2, Bersaluna 0, Umpad 0.

Quarter Scores: 21-13; 40-30; 64-53; 89-74.


CESAFI-East (92) – Akomo 19, Manzo 18, Aguirre 10, Auditor 8, Bajamunde 7, Codilla 6, Cabañero 6, Luz 5, Holper 3, Borces 2, Arong 2, Bolivar 2.

CESAFI-West (79) – Labares 13, Pono 10, Dimco 10, Villafranca 8, Puerto 8, Dinolan 7, Dela Cerna 6, Olago 6, Butohan 5, Magat 2, Ortega 2, Pepito 2, Lim 0, Rabat 0, Tagapan 0.

Quarter Scores: 23-17; 47-29; 69-55; 92-79. –

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