Watchmen Daily Journal and Boston Finance booked their ticket to the best-of-three finals after beating their respective rivals in the semifinals Monday evening in the 1 st PROBAC/LNA7 Basketball Invitational Tournament played at the West Negros University Gym.
The Watchmen squad survived erstwhile tournament leader Toyota-Bacolod in overtime, 118-113, while Boston shutdown Sun Cellular, 100-94.
A huge 32-point fourth quarter performance from Watchmen stalwarts, led by Jun Jun Alisbo, carried the team to a surprising final appearance after pulling away from a 106-deadlock at the regulation.
It was sweet revenge for Watchmen after a devastating loss to Toyota in the eliminations.
Alisbo scored 17 points, including three triples in the final period to lead Watchmen's scoring spree alongside Donald Quilantang and Marion Upu-an with 13 and 11 points in the quarter, while Rico Cabatu and Kempee Lagrason hit 10 and 8 markers to spearhead Toyota.
Back in the first quarter, Watchmen surprised Toyota with a 27-23 run behind the balanced scoring from Upu-an with 7, Ceasar Tan with 8 and JM Gonzales with 6 points, while Amit Teruel shot three treys for 11 points to lead Toyota.
However, Toyota came out with a stunning 39-23 blast in the second quarter to outscore Watchmen at the half, 62-50.
Cabatu fired 14 points, including a pair of triples to anchor Toyota 's offense as teammates Jack Tumayan and Allan Jaena contributed 8 points each, while Tivo Hisona and Tony Agustin combined for 9 points.
Adrian Manaquil delivered 11 while Quilantang and Alisbo shared 6 points apiece for Watchmen.
Getting the momentum back in the third quarter, Watchmen managed to cut the lead down to 9 points at the end of third, 83-74, behind Mananquil's 14 points and Henry Bagay's 6-point output, while Toyota players were limited to not more than 6 points in the quarter.
Mananquil paced Watchmen with 25 points as Alisbo added 23, Quilantang with 19, Upu-an with 18, Wacky Salbibia with 10, and Gonzales and Tan with 8 points apiece.
On the other hand, Cabatu led Toyota with 24 points as Lagrason backed him up with 14, Teruel with 11; Tumayan, Jaena and Eric Deloria with 8 points each, Hisona with 7 points while Henry Subebe and Diom Mariano with 6 points each.
In the other semifinal match, Boston Finance also played a late run in the final period to beat Sun Cellular.
After a stunning 32-15 demolition in the first quarter, Boston slowed down in the next period giving away a 23-22 tally for Sun Cellular. Boston ended the half on top, 54-38.
As momentum shifted to the Cellular, the latter poured a 33-20 run to cut the lead down to 3 points at the end of the third period, 74-71.
However, Sun Cellular was not able to sustain their offense as Boston regained their touches for 27 points against Cellular's 22 markers.
Jerald Abrot anchored Boston with 18 points as RB Chua hitting 15, Brad Hojilla with 14, and Yan Dy and Matt Delis with 11 apiece.
On the other hand, Peewee Demonteverde shot 21 points to spearhead Sun Cellular in losing effort while Dave Docto and JR Fernandez collected 18 and 17 points apiece as Mars Echarri contributed 12 points.*NAB
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