D-League: Key duels for quarters berths

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Chasing quarterfinal berths, teams in the middle of the pack figure in key duels today in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.

Fruitas, tied for fifth spot with EA Regen, tries to arrest a two-game slide when it takes on winless Informatics, even as Cebuana Lhuillier, on a three-team logjam for seventh spot, and Café France tangle in another crucial showdown at 2 p.m.

Big Chill, which is tied with Cebuana and Cagayan Valley for seventh spot, battles a Jumbo Plastic squad still hoping to sneak into the playoffs.

With practically one game separating third-ranked teams and the teams tied at seventh spot, the three matches today could prove decisive in determining the Top 6 teams that will enter the playoffs.

The Bakers are still nursing faint hopes for an outright semifinal berth and winning against the Gems should be the next step, after getting derailed by an inspired Boracay Rum squad, 55-50, last Tuesday.

“We have to move forward by accepting the loss and get ready for Cebuana,” said Café France coach Egay Macaraya.

The Gems are also looking to arrest a two-game slide to keep their semifinal hopes alive in the 12-team tournament, which offers the Top 2 teams outright entry to the semifinals.

The third and fourth seed teams will enjoy a twice-to-beat advantage over the fifth and sixth placed teams in the quarterfinals.

“We may not be a powerhouse team but no team will take us lightly because we are on top,” said Macaraya.

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