NLEX whips Cagayan; Cafe France prevailsBy Cedelf P. Tupas
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The NLEX Road Warriors encountered just token resistance in ripping the Cagayan Rising Suns, 84-53, last night to post their seventh straight victory in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena.
Fluid offensively, the Road Warriors closed out the first period with a 17-3 blast and sustained their assault as they remained the only unbeaten team in the tournament.
Except for coach Boyet Fernandez’ ejection in the fourth period for continuous complaining, there was hardly any misstep from the Road Warriors, who moved within two wins of completing an elimination-round sweep.
Earlier, Cafe France snapped a four-game losing skid and kept its playoff hopes alive with an 81-66 drubbing of Junior Powerade, 81-66.
Marion Magat pumped in 20 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, while NCAA Rookie of the Year Josan Nimes wound up with 17 markers for the Bakers, who bucked the absence of Mike Parala in the last five minutes.
With the victory, the Bakers improved to 2-4 to forge a three-team tie for the sixth and last playoff berth.
“The win is good for our morale,” said Cafe France coach Edgar Macaraya. “We have to get four wins. We have to focus on our game against Cagayan. If we win that game, there’s a good chance for us to get in the quarterfinals.”
The Bakers opened the game with an 11-2 run to seize control before Powerade briefly rallied in the final period.
CAFE FRANCE 81—Magat 20, Nimes 17, Knuttel 11, Mabayo 7, Guillen 6, Parala 5, Semira 5, Racal 5, Garcia 3, Gallardo 2, Jeruta 0, Magbitang 0, Alquisalas 0.
JR POWERADE 66—Silungan 21, Cubo 14, Padilla 9, Juruena 6, Lopez 6, Escueta 6, Reyes 4, Wong 0, Gingerich 0, Hipolito 0, Manuel 0, Gamboa 0.
Quarters: 31-14, 55-29, 67-49, 81-66
NLEX 84—Hodge 16, Monfort 15, Ellis 11, Arao 10, Dehesa 7, Suguitan 5, Hermida 4, Lanete 4, Co 4, Long 3, Marcelo 3, Pascual 2.
CAGAYAN 53—Arce 17, Agas 14, Melano 10, Aggarao 3, Lapuz 3, Bulangis 3, Lascano 1, Dela Cruz 1, Custodio 1, Chiu 0, Macuha 0, Calabung 0, Tagarda 0.
Quarters: 20-6, 51-19, 69-30, 84-53