Cafe France gets top spot, nips Phoenix in OT | Inquirer Sports
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Cafe France gets top spot, nips Phoenix in OT

/ 09:21 PM July 21, 2016
PBA IMAGES

PBA IMAGES



The Finals rematch lived up to the hype, and at the forefront of it all is Carl Bryan Cruz.

Facing off against his former comrades in Far Eastern U, Cruz lifted Cafe France in overtime, 96-93, over Phoenix Thursday in the 2016 PBA D-League Foundation Cup at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.

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Cruz scored nine of his 15 points in extra time to help the Bakers rise to the top spot, scoring its fourth straight win to improve their standing with a 7-2 card.

“Ang importante coming into the Final Four if given a chance, makuha namin yung top two,” said coach Egay Macaraya. “Masyadong short yung liga so hopefully, makuha namin sa dulo.”

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Cruz was poised to seal the deal after his baseline drive made it 92-85 with 1:06 left, but Mike Tolomia and Roger Pogoy nailed huge threes in the end to get Phoenix within one, 94-93, with 8.5 ticks remaining.

Fortunately, Paul Zamar was cool from the stripe as he nailed a pair of freebies with 5.1 seconds left to push Cafe France up, 96-93, before Tolomia missed his game-tying three against two defenders at the buzzer.

Rod Ebondo took charge for the Bakers with 15 markers, 16 rebounds, and four blocks, while Zamar also scored 15.

Mon Abundo added 13 markers, five dimes, and four boards, while Aaron Jeruta had 12 points and five rebounds.

Phoenix fell to a tie for second place with Racal at 7-2.

Pogoy topped the Accelerators with 26 points on a 5-of-10 shooting from three along with 10 rebounds, while Tolomia netted 16 markers, seven boards, and six assists.

Ed Daquioag also finished with 16 points and five rebounds in the defeat.

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Phoenix played without Mac Belo, who sat the game out due to a sprained ankle.

The Accelerators had to battle back from a 75-68 deficit with 3:26 left and forced overtime after Tolomia canned all of his three freebies to tie the game at 79 with 3.5 seconds remaining. Zamar still got a shot at the halfcourt, but his hail mary bounced out at the end of regulation.

The Scores:

CAFE FRANCE 96 – Cruz 15, Ebondo 15, Zamar 15, Abundo 13, Jeruta 12, Opiso 6, Parala 6, Custodio 5, Casino 4, Manlangit 3, Arim 2.
PHOENIX 93 – Pogoy 26, Daquioag 16, Tolomia 16, Escoto 11, Inigo 10, Jamito 6, Mendoza 5, Colina 2, Batino 1, Andrada 0, Tamsi 0.

Quarters: 19-21, 42-35, 59-57, 79-79, 96-93.

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TAGS: 96, Cafe France, PBA D-League Finals, Tolomia
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