PBA D-League: UST beats St. Clare, forces rubber match for semis spot
MANILA, Philippines–Builders Warehouse-UST’s PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup semifinals dreams remained alive after escaping Adalem Construction-St. Clare, 98-93, at Smart Araneta Coliseum on Friday.
The Tiger neutralized the Saints’ twice-to-beat advantage in the playoffs and forced a rubber match for Sunday, 11 a.m. at the same venue.
UST rookie Kean Baclaan’s heroics led the team to victory with 35 points with eight of them being scored in the payoff period.
The Saints were just down by four, 97-93, with 28 seconds remaining when Paul Manalang split his freethrows and left the door open for St. Clare.
However, Tiger sophomore Nic Cabanero came up with a crucial steal from St. Clare’s Johnsherick Estrada to seal the game. He finished with 25 points.
The Tigers were down by as much as 13 at the end of the first quarter, 25-12, before rallying back and tying the game with a 27-point quarter.
Sherwin Concepcion also came up big UST with a double-double of 18 markers and 13 boards.
One-and-done Growling Tiger Joshua Fontanilla scored 23 points for St. Clare with Estrada scattering 15 in the loss.
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