Fiesta returns to finals


Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan’s Paul Quizon goes up for an acrobatic shot against Shirley’s Coffee Shop’s Jerome Pollisco during the first half of their playoff game in the Tan Holdings caging last Friday at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Fiesta Resort & Spa will have a chance to defend its title in the 2016 Tan Holdings Inter-Company Basketball League after pummeling Shirley’s Coffee Shop, 94-44, in last Friday’s playoff match at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium.

Fiesta, which topped three of the four editions of the league, including the last two, will face the undefeated and heavily favored Kanoa Resort in this Friday’s championship showdown. Kanoa, with its unbeaten mark in the double-elimination playoffs, has a twice-to-beat advantage in the title duel.

A balance scoring in its do-or-die game against Shirley’s allowed Fiesta to take the easy win and set up a finals meeting against Kanoa. Three Fiesta players broke into double figures, while eight others made it to the board and contributed at least 4 points each.

As for the Shirley’s side, only John Jugos consistently hit baskets for his team, as he knocked in 18 markers. Shirley’s nailed only four triples—a far cry from the 11 it buried in its 57-38 victory over JP Mambas last week. Aaron Pamintuan, who converted six treys in their victory over JP Mambas, was held to 4 points versus

Fiesta, making only one field goal.

Shirley’s had a lackluster offense midway in the first half, while Fiesta was on target right at the get-go and hit shots everywhere, allowing the defending champion to take a commanding 45-20 halftime advantage.

Paul Quizon, Jarette Matsutaro, Elmer Esdrelon, and Fradel Sedillo worked together to lift Fiesta to the double-digit lead after the first half. Quizon started things off for his team, scoring 8, while Esdrelon also heated up early, knocking in three triples. Matsutaro and Sedillo finished strong for Fiesta in the first half, combining for 13 of the team’s last 15 markers in that period.

The lead ballooned to as high 52 in the second half, as Fiesta’s offensive firepower proved too much for Shirley’s, which had difficulty finding players to back up Jugos. Shirley’s played in the playoffs without big man and scorer Eric Dela Rosa, who left for the U.S. late last month.

Matsutaro paced Fiesta’s lopsided win, tallying 16, while Quizon and Tanner Maratita chipped in 14 and 11, respectively.

Fiesta 94 — Matsutaro 16, Quizon 14, Maratita 11, Sedillo 9, Esdrelon 9, Lavarias 8, Demafelix 7, Macoto 6, Villamena 6, Reyes 4, Nonato 4.

Shirley’s 44 — Jugos 18, Drilon 6, Nicdao 4, Pollisco 4, Palma 4, Pamintuan 4, Bordon 2, Sabino 2.

Scoring by halves: 45-20, 94-44.

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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