Coca-Cola/Subway edges Mobil/COAG


Coca-Cola/Subway’s Michael Cabanas goes up for an uncontested layup during their earlier game against Star Water in the JEM/Mobil caging at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Coca-Cola/Subway nosed out Mobil/COAG, 74-73, during the final regular season game in the JEM Company Ltd./Mobil Customer Appreciation Basketball League last Wednesday night at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium.

Wil Francisco hit the dagger off Mark Ogasawara’s feed in the last two seconds of the game to foil Mobil/COAG’s bid for an upset.

Francisco’s go-ahead came after Mobil/COAG wrestled the lead, 73-72, off Marlon Sison’s triple, with under 10 seconds left in the match. Coca-Cola/Subway then missed on its offensive set, while Coca-Cola/Subway got the ball, however in the inbound play from the backcourt, Sison’s pass to Patrick Pelisamen hit the latter’s knee and the ball went out of the baseline. Coca-Cola/Subway got the possession back to pave the way for Francisco’s heroics.

Francisco was one of the three Coca-Cola/Subway players to finish in twin digits in their close win over Mobil/COAG. He had 10 points, while Michael Cabanas tallied 36 markers, making three crucial free three throws down the stretch that put Coca-Cola/Subway on top in the seesaw battle. Edward Armia chipped in 24.

Sison, on the other hand, led Mobil/COAG’s losing cause with his 21 points, while Alvin Almario contributed 16. Mobil/COAG and Coca-Cola/Subway will meet anew on March 17 in the first round of the single-elimination playoffs as the latter gained the No. 3 seeding in the 16-team field with its 6-1 record. Mobil/COAG ended up with a 1-6 mark to rank No. 14.

Meanwhile, in the other game in the final day of the regular season, Star Water defeated Konstrak Builders.

Melvin Gallardo and Rommel Dizon teamed up in lifting Star Water past the winless Konstrak Builders. Gallardo had a team-high 28 points, while Dizon chipped in 24. Ronald Bernardo paced Konstrak Builders with a game-high 34 markers.

Star Water wrapped up pool play with a 3-4 record for the No. 10 seeding in the playoffs and it will face the seventh-ranked GPPC on March 20.

Other first round pairings are No. 2 Mariana Resort vs. No. 15 Triple J; No. 12 McDonald’s vs. No. 5 Top Development, Inc.; No. 1 TanHoldings vs. No. 16 Konstrak Builders; No. 6 Best Deal/RNV Construction vs. No. 11 Westco; No. 4 Joeten vs. No. 13 Docomo Pacific; and No. 8 Commonwealth Utilities Corp. vs. No. 9 CTSI/D&Q.

Seeding was determined by the team standings in each pool. For teams (from different pools) that tied, points system was implemented to break the tie, while for squads in similar group, the win-over-the-other was used.

First Game
Star Water 85 – Gallardo 28, Dizon 24, Brel 17, Ombac 9, Quiban 5.
Konstrak Builders 76 – Bernardo 34, Sabidal 25, Alfonso 6, Espejo 4, Lansang 4.
Scoring by quarters: 23-18, 44-44, 69-60, 85-76.

Second Game
Coca-Cola/Subway 74 – Cabanas 34, Armia 24, Francisco 10, Felix 5, Deang 4.
Mobil/COAG 73 – Sison 21, Almario 16, Torres 9, Manzano 9, Pelisamen 8, Agustin 4, Aguilar 4.
Scoring by quarters: 16-16, 37-33, 51-48, 74-73.

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.

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