Connie’s BBQ secures spot in finals

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Posted on Oct 21 2019

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Connie’s BBQ’s Frankie Rodriguez, right, challenges the defense of Tsingtao’s Mark Demonteverde during their elimination round game in the One Pacific caging at the Civic Center Court. Connie’s and Tsingtao will collide in the finals this Saturday. (Kimberly A. Bautista)

Connie’s BBQ filled the second seat in the finals of the 2019 One Pacific Promotional Basketball League after outclassing Mawati, 78-66, in their semifinals match last Thursday at the Civic Center Court.

Mawati and Connie’s BBQ’s semis tiff was first played last Wednesday, but was rained-out and resumed the next day with the latter ahead, 15-10, in the closing minutes of the first quarter. Connie’s went on to remain in control of the battle for the last finals ticket to earn the right to face No. 1 seed Tsingtao Boyz in the title match this Saturday.

Frankie Bongalan top-scored for Connie’s with his 20 points, while three of his teammates also delivered double figures. Darwin Barbo added 17, Nelson Cabang made 12, and Ronald Esmores chipped in 11.

Bongalan went all out in the final quarter, as his 11 points handed Connie’s BBQ the 12 point winning margin.

Earlier in the first period, Bongalan also posted Connie’s last 5 points in that canto, while Esmores and Barbo combined for 11 markers, as their team hung on to a 17-15 lead. Mawati fell behind by only a deuce after the opening frame with Jerome Directo scoring 7 points.

However, Connie’s gained more cushion in the next two frames with Cabang stepping up, recording 9 points and teaming up with Barbo in keeping their safe distance. Connie’s advantage increased to 9, 59-50, going into the fourth period.

Bongalan then took over in the fourth canto to bring Connie’s to the finals and eliminate Mawati.

The one-game finals between Connie’s BBQ and Tsingtao was originally scheduled for last Saturday, but was moved to this weekend due to the bad weather. The third place match featuring Mawati and Pardz Ballers, on the other hand, is set for this Wednesday.

Connie’s BBQ 78—Bongalan 21, Barbo 17, Cabang 12, Esmores 11, Dayao 8, Danao 7, Echaves 3.
Mawati 66 —Directo 20, Ferrer 13, Gontar 11, Nonato 10, Quizon 6, Avila 4, Rena 2.
Scoring by quarters: 17-15, 36-30, 59-50, 78-66.

Kimberly Bautista | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at kimberly_bautista@saipantribune.com.

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