MANILA, Philippines—It will be Kapatagan against Zamboanga Sibugay in the Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup Mindanao Challenge finals, after they dispatched their respective opponents in the semifinals on Monday at Pagadian City Gymnasium in Zamboanga del Sur.
Fourth-seeded Zambo Sibugay shocked top-seeded GlobalPort-Misor, 81-64, to grab the first finals ticket.
A huge third quarter propelled the Warriors to victory, turning a slim 37-33 advantage at the half into a commanding lead that MisOr could not overcome.
Jaybie Mantilla delivered 13 of his 19 points in the third period as the Warriors dropped 29 points while holding the Valientes to just nine to build a huge 24-point spread entering the fourth, 66-42.
MisOr opened the payoff frame with 9 straight points courtesy of Andoy Estrella and Reil Cervantes to inch within 15 with 7:59 of basketball left to play. However, that would be the closest they could get as the Warriors steadied down the stretch.
Cris Dumapig chipped in 14 points and 10 rebounds while Jan Jamon and Monbert Arong got 11 points apiece.
BYB Kapatagan then snatched the last finals berth after holding off host team Pagadian, 66-56, in the second game of the double-header.
"Hindi ko inisip noong mag umpisa kami dito na makakaabot kami sa Finals. Hindi talaga!," Kapatagan head coach Jaime Rivera said.
Down by two late in the third quarter, the Buffalos closed the period with 10 straight points to regain the lead entering the fourth before adding four more points to create a 12-point lead, 50-38, with 8:03 left on the clock.
Franz Diaz, Charles Pepito, and Glenn Acaylar connived to slice Pagadian's deficit to just six with 6:15 left, 50-44.
But Garexx Puerto and KD Ariar retaliated seven unanswered points to keep Kapatagan afloat the rest of the way, 57-44.
"Sinabihan ko na talaga 'yung players na hanggang walang buzzer, walang bibitaw kaya ayun namaintain namin 'yung lead namin," said Rivera.
Jonel Bonganciso led the Buffalos with 15 points, eight rebounds, two steals, and a block.
Gayford Rodriguez added 10 points and seven rebounds, while Puerto and Ariar combined for 17 points.
The third spot Buffalos will face fourth seed Zamboanga Sibugay in the best-of-three Finals starting on Wednesday at 8 pm.
Zamboanga Sibugay vs. MisOr
Zamboanga Sibugay 81 - Mantilla 19, Dumapig 14, Jamon 11, Arong 11, Foronda 9, Octobre 8, Sorela 5, Caunan 2, Imperial 2, Lacastesantos 0, Pasia 0, Bangcoyan 0, Almocera 0.
MisOr 64 - Lee Yu 17, Estrella 16, Cervantes 10, Nalos 7, Baracael 5, Salcedo 4, Meca 3, Ubalde 2, Diaz 0, Agbong 0, Ballesteros 0.
Quarterscores: 22-16, 37-33, 66-42, 81-64.
Kapatagan vs. Pagadian
Kapatagan 66 - Bonganciso 15, Rodriguez 10, Puerto 9, Ariar 8, Lao 7, Daanoy 6, Kwong 4, Sollano 3, Delfinado 2, Igot 2.
Pagadian 56 - Mag-isa 14, Diaz 8, Pepito 8, Ibanez 7, Fuentes 6, Pamaran 4, Acaylar 4, Caballero 3, Demigaya 2, Uri 0, Saludsod 0, Demapilis 0, Dechos 0.
Quarterscores: 15-19, 30-27, 46-38, 66-56.