CJ Cansino sparks UP breakaway in Filoil Preseason win
MANILA, Philippines — CJ Cansino erupted in the fourth quarter as University of the Philippines turned back the also-ran University of the East, 103-81, to clinch the No.2 seed in Group II of the 2023 Filoil EcoOil Preseason Cup on Thursday at Filoil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.
With the Red Warriors holding a one-point lead to start the fourth quarter, 69-68, Cansino caught fire and ignited the Fighting Maroons’ 17-2 run to build an 85-71 margin with 4:22 remaining.
The graduating guard, who returned from a knee injury, sank three treys down the stretch as UP blasted UE in the payoff period, 35-15.
“CJ is a guy that’ll never hesitate. We moved the ball well and it just so happened that CJ got good looks,” said UP assistant coach Christian Luanzon, speaking for Goldwin Monteverde.
Cansino finished with 14 points and three assists. Harold Alarcon led the charge for the Fighting Maroons with 17 points, five rebounds, and two blocks, while Francis Lopez contributed 15 points and five rebounds.
UP earned its seventh win in nine games to seal the No.2 spot, edging National University (6-2) by virtue of a win over the other.
The Red Warriors ended their campaign with a 3-6 card despite putting up a gallant fight against the UAAP runner-up in the first three quarters by forcing 11 deadlocks and seven lead changes.
Noy Remogat unleashed 30 points on top of five assists, four rebounds, and two steals but it went for naught with another loss for UE, which also drew a double-double from American Delvieon Jackson’s 18-point and 16-rebound effort.
Meanwhile, Ateneo earned its third straight victory in Group II after dominating Faith Colleges of Batangas, 92-53, with Kai Ballungay and Joseph Obasa sustaining their fine plays.
Ballungay showed the way for the Blue Eagles with 22 points, while Obasa dropped 13 points and nine rebounds to improve their record to 3-5.
Lebron Nieto and Ian Espinosa were also instrumental with 11 points apiece for the Tab Baldwin-coached team.
“We talked before the game about having the right mentality all the time. If you’re gonna be a competitor, you should show urgency all the time,” said Baldwin.
The Bravehearts ended their campaign after losing all their nine matches with Adam Fernando and Lloyd Dimawala carrying the loads with 11 points each.
In Group I, San Sebastian College-Recoletos kept fellow NCAA team Arellano University winless after pulling off an 85-78 conquest.
Alex Desoyo dropped 21 points, while Scoobs Escobido scored eight of his 15 points in the final four minutes of the game to lead the Golden Stags to their second consecutive win for a 4-5 card.
“We’re happy because we didn’t expect to get four wins after losing a couple of players and introducing our new system,” said first-year San Sebastian coach John Kallos.
Jade Talampas’ 20-point and 10-rebound outing went for naught as the Chiefs remained winless in eight games.