BAGUIO CITY – With only two games to go, Exercitus Dei posted its fourth win to stay alive in the elimination round for bracket “A” and bar Brotherhood from securing a slot to the semis during the elimination round of the YMCA Cup last week.
Exercitus and Brotherhood strategized their defensive positions in their match up, setting up the ensuing low scoring game. At the end of the first, Brotherhood got a 24-19. Exercitus Dei then outscored Brotherhood by two in the second to cut down the Brotherhood’s lead to three points 37-34.
Exercitus Dei pressed on to their limits in the third and again that paid off, dropping off a 14-11 run, to equalize the score, 48-all entering the fourth.
Realizing the need for an offensive rally, Brotherhood’s Philip Apaan and Jerick Pakias, trying to push their team for a more comfortable lead, found their marks, however, Arman Pasion and Roman Dela Cruz of Exercitus did the same in their ranks to create a see-saw battle between the teams.
As the game trend continued to the dying minutes of the game, an important conversion from Brotherhood’s Jun Domingo equalize the score, 66-all, then teammate Jerick Pakias hit the basket to give Brotherhood a breather, 68-67.
Exercirus Dei’s Roman Dela Cruz returned the favor by hitting the basket for a 69-68 lead. In the dying seconds of the fourth canto, Exercitus Dei gave up a foul that sent Jerick Pakias on the fifteen foot line. Pakias came up with a split to knot the score anew, 69-all.
A foul was then given up by the Brotherhood to send Roman Dela Cruz to the line. Dela Cruz also manage to convert one to give Exercitus Dei the solitary point lead 70-69 and win the game as the time expired.
Meanwhile, My Desk Bracket C matched up with Boleroz in second game started in the wrong side as a 30-13 run by the Boleroz in the first canto of play got them staring at a big 17-point deficit.
Strategizing for defense, My Desk slowly recovered starting in the second canto. They outscored the Boleroz 19-14 and chop the lead down to 11 at the half.
Third canto action saw My Desk pushing it hard with Andrae Tabin finding his mark to ditch-in five three pointers that lift My Desk a point shy of the lead, 62-63. Changes in strategies were visible in the fourth quarter action as both opponents opted for an offensive strategy persistent to win the game.
My Desk’s court general, Lyle Singalaoa, took the chore of penetrating the paint while teammate Andrea Tabin took the outside shots while Boleroz Karl Alonzo and Erasmo Alvares took on the job to pile points for their team to force the game into a see-saw battle.
Leading in the dying seconds by one point, 92-91, My Desk had the game in their hands, however, giving up a foul on the situation sent Boleroz to make two conversions in the line and losing the ball in the inbound did in My Desk as the Boleroz escape with a 95-92 victory as the final buzzer sounded.
The other winners in last week’s games were: Town’s Pizza 87 – Monday Ballclub 104, Falcons 81 – Dos Republic 89, Reserves 71 – BWD 84, Monday Ballclub 102 – Quest 83, Dos Republic 59 – Town’s Pizza 58, ROC-B winner by default over Dacanay Print Shop, Kuya Ponz 85 – Stallion 64, and MY Desk 76 – Stingers 73.
By: BOBBY VINLUAN