Basilan crushes Mandaue for Game 1 lead


JUMBO PLASTIC-Basilan made a statement, crushing Visayas champs KCS Mandaue, 94-67, to take Game One in the 2021 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup best-of-five Southern Finals on Wednesday at the Pagadian City Gymnasium in Zamboanga del Sur.

The Computer Specialists made the first basket of the game, but that would be the last time they’ve seen the scoreboard in their favor.

The Peace Riders would then take a 44-31 halftime advantage.

“In the first half, we couldn’t pull away because we are disorganized in our executions. I told them to follow the pattern of our executions and play our tough defense,” Basilan head coach Jerson Cabiltes said.

But Basilan showed their might once more, going on a 16-3 rally, capped by Michael Mabulac’s basket in the paint, to erect a 26-point lead with 6:15 left in the third  period, 60-34.

Jong Baloria’s free throw put the Mindanao kings on top by 35, their biggest of the game, 86-50 with 5:43 to go in the match.

Mindanao Leg Finals MVP Chris Bitoon continued his fine play, producing 19 points, three assists, and two steals.

Baloria followed suit with 13 points, seven rebounds, and three assists, while Michael Mabulac punched in 11 points and six rebounds.

Michael Juico, Philip Manalang, and Bobby Balucanag tallied 10 points apiece.

Steve Castro was the lone bright spot for KCS with 18 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field, to go with five rebounds and two assists.

New addition Miguel Gastador added 11  points.

Basilan targets a 2-0 lead tomorrow, 6 pm, but Mandaue looks to tie the series.

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