Greenies a win away from completing Cinderalla run to NCAA Jrs. title
MANILA, Philippines – The La Salle Green Hills Greenies continue to surprise everybody by taking down the defending champions Mapua Red Robins, 74-68, to draw first blood in the best-of-3 finals series of the NCAA Season 93 juniors’ basketball tournament at the Araneta Coliseum Friday, Nov. 10.
Mapua trimmed a 7-point deficit from the third quarter to just two points to start the fourth following back-to-back baskets from Clint Escamis and Mike Enriquez, 61-63, but Joshua Marcos scored a layup and a triple to give the Greenies a 68-61 lead.
The Red Robins made another go for it to make things interesting only to run out of steam in the final two minutes when they scored only a single field goal.
Joshua David starred for the Greenies with 17 points, 14 rebounds and 5 assists while Joel Cagulangan shrugged off a poor shooting day to end up with 17 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 steals.
Marcos added 15 points for LSGH, 9 of which came in the final period, to go with 8 boards while Rookie of the Year Inand Fornillos Inand Fonillos chipped in 14 points, 8 boards and 4 blocks despite being thrown out of the game following a disqualifying foul midway the third quarter.
Will Gozum, who was named Most Valuable Player, had a monster game for the Red Robins with 16 points, 19 rebounds and 5 blocks but scored just a single point in the fourth quarter.
Game 2 of the finals will be on Tuesday, Nov. 14, at the same venue.
LSGH 74 – Cagulangan 17, David 17, Marcos 15, Fornillos 14, Morales 4, Mosqueda 4, Sangco 3, Lao 0, Perez 0, Dela Cruz 0, Lepalam 0, Cruz 0
Mapua 68 – Gozum 16, Jabel 13, Escamis 11, Lacap 9, Bonifacio 6, Enriquez 6, Garcia 4, Ramos 3, Arches 0
Quarter scores: 19-20, 33-37, 59-52, 78-64