2nd GOVERNOR’S INTER-TOWN/CITY BASKETBALL
LINGAYEN —Binmaley and Manaoag defeated their rivals—Lingayen and Urdaneta City—in the best-of-three series of the 2nd Governor’s Cup Inter-Town/City Basketball Tournament semi-final rounds which kicked off on March 10 at the Narciso Ramos Sports and Civic Center (NRSCC) gymnasium.
Defending champion Binmaley, spearheaded by the Melendez duo, dominated the match against Lingayen in the first two quarters via a double-digit lead of 13 points at the end of the first half, 45-32.
Lingayen almost succeeded in turning the tide even without the presence of powerful cager Jessie Artates who was earlier slapped with suspension during their final game in the Magic Rounds against another semi-final hopeful from the Sto. Tomas team.
Team captain Marven Jophet Mamaril scored a three at the start of the final quarter and trimmed the lead of Binmaley by only 3 points, 61-58. At 8 minutes and 18 seconds time in the final quarter, the first deadlock, 62-62, was registered courtesy of two successful free throws from cager Santos. Momentum on both sides played in the next few minutes of the match bringing the score 69-64 after Binmaley’s top gunner Roxar Melendez unleashed a three-pointer at 5 minutes 9 seconds time left.
Mamaril scored a crucial three-pointer at 2 minutes 57 seconds left, 71-69, which was quickly answered by Binmaley cager Estebar with the same three-pointer during the final 2 minutes of the game, 75-69. However, missed shots by Lingayen cagers eventually favored Binmaley, 79-75 final score.
Meanwhile, Urdaneta City which was expected to be equally strong was clobbered by Manaoag team, last season’s 1st runner-up.
The battle between the two teams became lopsided as Manaoag registered a 14-point lead in the first quarter, 33-19; 15-point advantage at the end of the second quarter; 55-40, and 18-point lead on the third quarter, 71-53. Manaoag ended the game with a 19-point advantage, 90-71.
As this developed, Sports Director Modesto Operania urged all coaches and players of the four teams to adhere to the core value of sportsmanship and fair play.
Second game will be held at the same venue on March 17 starting 1:30 PM. If necessary, a third match will be conducted on March 24.
At the end of the semi-finals, the winners in each group will challenge each other for the finals berth while the losers will compete for the 3rd and 4th slots. (PIO/Ruby R. Bernardino)
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