Saipan Vegas rolled the dice in the fourth quarter and was rewarded with a 64-54 victory over Chowtime in the title match in the 2018 Civic Center Inter-color Basketball League last Sunday at the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium.
Angelo Fernando led Saipan Vegas’ gamble, as the wingman took charge of the team’s offense and scored 9 of his 19 points in the final canto. Fernando spearheaded Saipan Vegas’ 18-1 scored surge in a span of six minutes and change in the fourth quarter to turn a seesaw game late in the third to a 10-point winning margin.
The third canto ended with Saipan Vegas on top by only 4, 44-40, and it eventually lost the driver’s seat when Chowtime opened the fourth with a 6-0 run off Jomac Manzano’s triple, Jawn Joyner’s point-blanked shot and Jerald Rivera’s split.
Saipan Vegas sued for time to halt Chowtime’s rally and when the game resumed, Fernando canned a triple and after few more possession changes got back-to-back and-1 baskets. He failed to complete the 3-point plays, but it was enough to steady the ship, as he also drew help from Leo Galarse, who added a pair of field goals in that run.
Junar Guiab then finished the spurt with two straight baskets underneath to hand Saipan Vegas its biggest lead, 62-47, with a little over a minute left in the finale. Chowtime scored only one point—off Mark Asuhan’s free throw—in the meltdown and though the team managed to hit two consecutive baskets under the two-minute mark, it was not enough to spark a late comeback.
It did not help that Chowtime missed free throws down the stretch and its much taller frontliners—Joyner, Mark Demonteverde, and Steph Tolosa—had limited touches in the fourth period. Demonteverde and Tolosa were scoreless in the fourth after making 13 and 6 points, respectively, at the end of the third, while Joyner was held to a field goal and two free throws in the final frame.
Only Manzano had more than one field goal for Chowtime in the fourth period, but he also muffed several shots, while Fernando, Guiab, and Galarse combined for nine field goals. Guiab finished with 12 markers, while Galarse chipped in 9.
Meanwhile, in the first game, Islander eased past I-Secure, 69-49, to take the third place honors in the 16-team league.
Five of the six players who suited up for Islander scored in twin digits to crush I-Secure.
Saipan Vegas 64 — Fernando 19, Guaib 12, Mungcal 8, galarse 8, Camacho 6, R. Usi 5, Almario.
Chowtime 54 — Demonteverde 13, Asuhan 9, Joyner 8, Manzano 7, Tolosa 6, Del Rio 4, Rivera 3, Boncano 2, Pineda 2.
Scoring by quarters: 11-10,30-23, 44-40, 64-54.
Islander 69 — Jandoc 18, Saplan 14, Lansang 12, Santos 11, Buenaventura 10, Lightley 2.
I-Secure 49 — Herrera 22, Rotap 10, Andrews 9, Mercado 4, Osias 2, Balansag 2.
Scoring by quarters: 13-11, 36-22, 53-33, 69-49.