Isaiah capped its regular season campaign in the 4th Genesis Cup Christian Churches Inter-Color Basketball League on a winning note after crushing Samuel, 84-59, last Monday night at the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium.
Isaiah finished the round-robin eliminations with a 5-2 record as it moved up to second place in the team standings behind the unbeaten Daniel (7-0). Isaiah also snapped its two-game skid, while denying Samuel entry to the win column, as the latter ended the regular season with a 0-7 mark.
Fred Fatialofa led Isaiah’s demolition of Samuel, as his towering presence in the paint proved to be too much for the hapless Samuel. Fatialofa cherry-picked in the shaded lane, scoring 6 of Isaiah’s first 10 points to give his team an early double-digit lead, 10-0.
Samuel was held scoreless for about five minutes of the first half and never recovered from thereon, as it failed to put the clamps on Fatialofa, who made several baskets off putbacks.
The Isaiah center went on to finish the first 20 minutes of play with 18 points to power his team to a comfortable 41-21 halftime advantage. Another Isaiah big man Francis Estanislao and guard Oliver Gragasin provided support to Fatialopa in the first frame, combining for 13 markers.
In the second half, Gragasin scored in double figures (10), while Walter Brillo also found his form, matching the former’s output after nailing only one basket in the first half. Five other Isaiah players hit the board in the second half en route to their 25-point win.
Fatialofa led all scorers with his 22 points, while Chino Ponce paced Samuel with his 21 markers.
Meanwhile, two more playing days are left in the regular season and results of the four remaining matches will determine the three other playoff pairings. Daniel is already assured of the top spot and will be pitted against the last-ranked Samuel in the first round of the playoffs. Other pairings will be No. 2 vs No.7, No. 3 vs No. 6, and No. 4 vs No. 5.
Caleb is in third place with its 4-1 record and will play Ezekiel (2-3) tomorrow in the second game before closing out against Joshua (2-3) on Monday also in the second match. The other tiff this Friday will have Jeremiah (1-5) battling Joshua in the first game, while Gideon (3-3) will take on Ezekiel in the last match on Monday.
Isaiah 84 – Fatialofa 22, Gragasin 16, Brillo 13, Estanislao 12, Cortez 11, De Leon 6, Buno 2.
Samuel 59 – Ponce 21, Guevarra 11, Badal 10, Belgado 7, Calibo 4, Samonte 2, Abragan 2, Bonquin 2.
Scoring by halves: 41-21, 84-59.