CEBU CITY, Philippines – The University of San Jose Recoletos (USJ-R) Jaguars needed an overtime to forge a rubbermatch against the Southwestern University (SWU) Cobras in the battle for third place of the seniors division of the 15th CESAFI men’s basketball tournament.
The USJ-R Jaguars leveled the series at 1-all after squeaking past the SWU Cobras, 82-81, in overtime after the regulation ended at 70-all.
Ralph Jude “RJ” Dinolan once again towed the Jaguars with his 27 points while also grabbing 3 rebounds and making 3 steals.
Another Jaguar who contributed to USJR’s victory was Juan Miguel Gastador who finished with 24 points while Kevin Rey Villafranca chipped in 10 points.
(READ: CESAFI: SWU tops USJR in game 1 of battle for third)
The Cobras relied on their one-two punch of two-time Most Valuable Player Mark Jayven “MacMac” Tallo and Jan Michael Auditor who had 17 and 15 points, respectively. Also contributing to the action was Melvin Holper with his 14 points.
The Jaguars and Cobras will not only be contesting for third place this Sunday October 11 at 3:45 pm but will also be fighting for a slot to the Vismin championship of the Philippine Collegiate Champions League (PCCL) in Ormoc.
The Jaguars was trailing the Cobras by 3 points with 3:52 left in the fourth quarter but they grabbed the upperhand on back-to-back baskets of Dinolan as the game entered the 2:29 mark.
The Jaguars got back the lead on Jovanie Luz’s shot but Villafranca sank his freebies for a 68-all inside the last 2-minute mark.
With the seconds petering out, Dinolan missed his reverse layup but drew a foul. He then split the resulting charities to tie the game at 70-all and forced the five-minute extension.
While Holper sank 6 points on two triples, the Jaguars managed to stay a point ahead at 77-76 on the five points of Dinolan, the last two points he scored after receiving a pass from Melvin Navarra.
The Cobras then wrestled back the lead on the rainbow shot of Luz who later was called for a hard foul on Dinolan.
Gastador had to replace Dinolan, who was favoring his left arm, but failed to convert the freebies. He, however, made up for it by sinking a layup to once again tie the game at 79-all.
Tallo gave the Cobras the upperhand once again but a hard foul on Villafranca by Juju Bautista had the Jaguars nipping at the heels of the Cobras by just a point after Villafranca split his charities.
With 21.4 seconds left, Gastador eventually sealed the win for USJR after Tallo missed his layup in the return play.
USJ-R (82) – Dinolan 27, Gastador 24, Villafranca 10, Mantilla 8, Bayhonan 4, Peromingan 4, Navarra 2, Labares 1, Senining 0.
SWU (81) – Tallo 17, Auditor 15, Holper 14, Racho 12, Luz 11, Bautista 6, Pardo 6, Clam 1.
Quarter Scores: 18-25; 33-41; 57-63; 70-70 (Reg.); 82-81 (F/OT). – Rappler.com
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