Blue Eagles A+ Consultant remained undefeated in the open division of the United Filipino Organization IT&E 2019 Basketball League after avoiding the upset axe against GSM Hoopaholics last Sunday at the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium.
High-flying swingman Jaymark De Guzman broke a 71-all tie with a fastbreak layup with 7.2 seconds left in the cardiac game to give Blue Eagles a 73-71 lead, an advantage it would hold on to after Hoopaholics’ Eli Aughenbaugh missed a floater from 12 feet and both teams scrambled for the rebound as time expired.
It was a fitting end to a nip-and-tuck ballgame that saw both teams ignite scoring runs with neither really getting complete control of their matchup.
Douglas Schmidt and Manolo Manalo combined for 11 points in the first quarter, as Blue Eagles eked out a 15-14 lead. It was Jack Lizama and De Guzman’s turn to lead Blue Eagles in the second, as the duo tossed 4 points apiece that allowed their team to open a more comfortable 33-28 spread at the half.
In the third, Walter Mendez and Aughenbaugh made contributions on the offensive end, as Hoopaholics didn’t allow Blue Eagles to get too far away and they only faced a 6-point deficit, 47-53, heading into the final 10 minutes of the exciting contest. De Guzman did some heavy lifting for Blue Eagles in the third canto, as he exploded for 14 points.
Hoopaholics rallied at the start of the fourth and actually grabbed the lead, 55-53, after Alex Lauron shot 2-2 from the free throw line. Their lead, however, proved short-lived as Schmidt hit a floater, De Guzman got away with another soaring fastbreak layup, and Geno Libuw connected on a rare 3-pointer as Blue Eagles opened a 60-55 spread with time down to 6:03 in the ballgame.
Hoopaholics continued to shadow Blue Eagles in the next few minutes with both teams exchanging baskets. Aughenbaugh then gave Hoopaholics a 1-point lead, 67-66, with a barreling drive with time down to 2:07.
Schmidt would go 2-2 from the stripe in the next possession, but Aughenbaugh would answer with two free throws of his own to make it 69-68 in favor of Hoopaholics. Preston Basa would then fire a booming triple to give Blue Eagles a 71-69 lead with 1:31 left in the game.
Aughenbaugh’s free throws would tie it all up again at 71-all with 1:02 left on the clock when he was fouled by Lizama. An exchange of turnovers and missed shots later, De Guzman freed himself for the aforementioned uncontested layup that notched the final score.
De Guzman was hailed best player of the game with his game-high 26 points, while Schmidt was the only double-figure scorer for the now 5-0 Blue Eagles with 11 markers.
Hoopaholics, which dropped to 3-4, was led by the 16 points of Shane Deleon Guerrero, while Lauron and Melvin Cadiang chipped in 12 and 11 points, respectively, in the loss.
In the second open division game of the evening Freddie Pelisamen rekindled some of his old scoring touch to lead Shirley’s Coffee Shop to a 109-79 romp of Team Lakay.
Pelisaman scored a team-high 19 points to pace Shirley’s Coffee Shop, which also drew 16 points apiece from Jack Aranda, John Jugos, and Gerald Flores. The win allowed the team to improve to 6-3 in the team standings.
Richard Williams continued to be a burly inside presence for Team Lakay as he paced them in the loss with a game-high 21 points. Melvin Capalad backed him up with 13 of his own to the now 3-4 team.
Blue Eagles A+ Consultant 73 – De Guzman 26, Schmidt 11, Basa 9, Demapan 6, Manalo 6, Lizama 4, Ashburn 4, Libuw 3, Barbo 2.
GSM Hoopaholics 71 – Deleon Guerrero 16, Lauron 12, Cadiang 11, Manibusan 10, Aughenbaugh 10, Mendez 4, Cabrera 2, Babauta 2.
Scoring by quarters: 15-14, 33-28, 53-47-73-71.
Shirley’s Coffee Shop 109 –Pelisamen 19, Aranda 16, Flores 16, Jugos 16, Diaz 10, Mendiola 8, Duenas 6, Sablan 5, Verder 5, Lifoifoi 4, Palma 2.
Team Lakay 79 – Williams 21, Capalad 13, Bernardo 12, Cabrera 11, Reyes 8, Lumen 4, Galulu 4, Solis 2, Macaraeg 2, Alegre 2.
Scoring by quarters: 38-21, 66-48, 86-66, 109-79.