Mindanao's Jumbo Plastic-Basilan moved on the verge of sweeping the 2021 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup season on Thursday.
The Peace Riders rallied past KCS-Mandaue, 96-91, to take a 2-0 advantage in the Southern Finals here at the Pagadian City Gymnasium.
Basilan now holds a 2-0 series advantage in the race-to-three finals. The Peace Riders will try to complete their domination in Game 3 on Friday.
Chris Bitoon's lay-up in the waning seconds of the third period capped a 14-5 Basilan blast to enter the fourth with a 10-point lead, 75-65.
But KCS fought with a 10-0 spurt topped by a Joseph Nalos deuce to cut the lead down to 81-83 with 5:14 to go in the match. The Peace Riders, though, had one last push in them. Michael Mabulac, Jay Collado, and Hesed Gabo connived for an 8-0 run to restore order with 2:31 remaining, 91-81.
The two squads then just traded baskets to give Basilan the win.
"It was an ugly win, but a win is a win. 'Yung KCS they played with character and they showed so much perseverance today," said Basilan head coach Jerson Cabiltes.
Jonathan Uyloan topscored for the Peace Riders with 19 points on a 5-of-10 clip from deep, to go with four steals, two rebounds, and two assists.
Collado added 17 points, five rebounds, and four assists, while Mabulac had a huge double-double of 13 points and 14 rebounds.
Jong Baloria also chipped in 11 points and six rebounds.
Rhaffy Octobre bounced back from a scoreless Game 1, punching in 27 points on an ultra-efficient 9-of-13 clip, alongside six rebounds, and four assists for Mandaue.
Gileant Delator, Shaq Imperial, and Phil Mercader also chimed in 12 points apiece.
FROM THE ARCHIVES