Desiderio, CafeFrance edge out Teng, AMA
ABS-CBN Sports on Mar 06, 2017 07:46 PM
CafeFrance inched closer in nabbing a top two seed in the 2017 PBA D-League Aspirants' Cup, repulsing AMA Online Education, 92-83, on Monday at the JCSGO Gym in Quezon City.
Rod Ebondo captained the Bakers with 29 points, 18 rebounds, and six blocks while Paul Desiderio added 14 markers on a 3-of-6 shooting from threes.
CafeFrance bucked a poor third quarter and opened the fourth period with an 8-2 surge to regain a 75-70 lead. They went on cruise control from that point on.
The win allowed the Bakers to rise to 6-1, extending their winning streak to five – still in the thick of the race for those elusive top two spots.
"Ang maganda rito, nasa kamay pa namin yung aming destiny. We have to win our remaining games to hopefully land a spot in the top two," said coach Egay Macaraya.
Juami Tiongson fired 23 points and six rebounds while Jeron Teng had 22 markers, nine boards, and six assists for the Titans which ended their elimination schedule at 5-4.
Despite the loss, AMA has already qualified to the quarterfinals thanks to Tanduay's 86-66 victory over Batangas in the first game.
Mark Cruz and Jerwin Gaco provided the lift to carry the Rhum Masters in halting their two-game losing skid.
Brandishing their experience playing in the PBA, the ex-pros were crucial in helping Tanduay stop the bleeding and rise to a 4-3 card.
Cruz caught fire with 29 points, three assists, and two rebounds while Gaco immediately made his imprint, tallying 22 markers, 11 boards, and three assists in his D-League debut.
"The whole country knows Jerwin Gaco, his experience and his tenacity. Baka marami pang natitira sa tangke niya at maging hulog ng langit sya sa amin," said coach Lawrence Chongson.
Leaning behind Cruz and Gaco, the Rhum Masters unleashed a 24-8 second quarter, with the two combining for 16 markers before erecting a 41-27 halftime edge. The lead would balloon to 22, 86-64 late in the game.
Jaymo Eguilos also chipped in 11 points and four rebounds while Bong Quinto had 10 markers, six assists, and four boards.
The win wasn't only beneficial for Tanduay, as it also clinched Racal, Cafe France, and AMA Online Education quarterfinal seats.
Joseph Sedurifa topped Batangas (3-5) with 14 points, Jessie Saitanan got 11 markers and four boards, and Dan Sara got 10 points, three rebounds, and three assists in the loss.
TANDUAY 86 - Cruz 29, Gaco 22, Eguilos 11, Quinto 10, Vigil 5, Santos 3, Cenal 2, Sollano 2, Villamor 2, Asuncion 0, Palma 0, Sanga 0, Stevens 0, Varilla 0.
BATANGAS 66 - Sedurifa 14, Saitanan 11, Sara 10, Ablaza 7, Isit 6, De Joya 4, Mangabang 4, Dela Pena 3, Delfinado 3, Andrada 2, Laude 2, Fortu 0, Inciong 0, Lascano 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 17-19, 41-27, 64-52, 86-66.
CAFEFRANCE 92 - Ebondo 29, Desiderio 14, Arim 9, Casino 9, Calisaan 8, Faundo 6, Veron 5, Manlangit 4, Aquino 3, Baloria 3, Wamar 2, Guinitaran 0, Jeruta 0.
AMA 83 - Tiongson 23, Teng 22, Olayon 9, Alabanza 8, Arambulo 8, Barua 8, Taganas 5, Baluyot 0, Bragais 0, Riley 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 28-19, 50-45, 67-68, 92-83.