Alejandro lifts Go for Gold in upset win vs CEU
J-Jay Alejandro found his mark when it mattered as Go for Gold stunned Centro Escolar University, 91-89, in overtime heist Thursday in the 2018 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
The former NU Bulldog drilled two treys in the extra period, the last giving his side a 90-87 lead with 2:43 remaining before the Scratchers defense got the job done with Jimboy Pasturan securing crucial offensive boards in the final minute.
“It’s definitely a big win,” said coach Charles Tiu as his side leveled their standing at 3-3. “CEU is probably the best team in the league while we’re a new team. I like the fact that we fought and won against them.”
Alejandro fired nine points on a 2-of-6 shooting from downtown, while also nabbing four rebounds and two assists.
Justin Gutang led Go for Gold with 20 markers, five dimes, and four boards, while JK Casiño had 15 points, including the team’s last five points in regulation to force the overtime against his former squad.
He first tied the game at 82 with a booming right corner three with 50.3 seconds remaining, but Art Aquino got fouled and cashed in on his foul shots to give CEU the 84-82 lead with 33.0 seconds remaining.
Joseph Manlangit secured a steal on Matt Salem, but Aquino this time muffed both of his foul shots, setting the stage for Casiño to once again knot the score at 84 with a layup over Rod Ebondo with 5.1 ticks left.
Orlan Wamar forced the issue on the other end and gave Go for Gold one last chance, but Casiño could not connect on his desperation three at the buzzer as the game went to overtime.
It was the first defeat in four games for the Scorpions, which leaned on Congolese Ebondo, who finished with 34 points, 25 rebounds, and three blocks in the loss.
GO FOR GOLD 91 — Gutang 20, Casiño 15, Pasturan 14, Alejandro 9, Gaco 9, Leutcheu 9, Haruna 7, Domingo 3, Salem 3, Dixon 2, Ocampo 0.
CEU 89 — Ebondo 34, Wamar 16, Chan 12, Aquino 11, Manlangit 8, Cruz 4, Opiso 2, Arim 0, Caballero 0, Fuentes 0, Guinitaran 0, Saber 0, Uri 0, Veron 0.
Quarters: 27-17, 43-38, 58-65, 84-84, 91-89.
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