COACH Remar Baguio came in prepared for another beating, but it turned out his Team Cordova was ready for an upset against the visiting Mandaue City in the 6thDistrict elimination of the Cebu Governor’s Cup Inter-Cities/Municipalities Basketball Tournament last Sunday. Cordova handed Team Mandaue City yet another heart-breaking loss, 89-88, for the latter’s second loss in as many games, rendering CESAFI Grandslam winning coach Gary Cortes, still winless in the province-wide tournament organized by the Cebu Provincial Sports Commission.
Cordova earlier lost to Consolacion Sarok Weavers, 85-78, was trailing 76-64 early in the fourth quarter, when Baguio sent in Kerr Kevin Ventura to spark the comeback of the team. Ventura who partnered with his younger brother Karl Malone at the backcourt of Cordova, suddenly erupted with nine straight points that towed Cordova within 76-78 with 4:18 left in the game. Mandaue City regained composure and built an 86-80 lead at the 3:16 mark but Cordova was resilient as they scored the six straight points, in less than one minute,to even the game at 86-all.
Kenneth Brillo gave Mandaue City an elbow room with a bucket at the 2:02 mark. However, that proved to be the final basket of the visitors as Cordova put up a gallant defense that lead to Karl Malone Ventura’s winning triple at the final 1:10 of the game. Mandaue City has multiple chance of winning the game, including four successive attempts in the final 20.3 seconds, but they failed to convert under pressure.
The loss puts Mandaue City on a must-win situation on its last two games that includes hosting Cordova this Friday and visiting Consolacion Sarok Weavers on April 6. Meanwhile, defending champions Talisay City Aquastars continued to pile win as they defeated the Minglanilla Archangels 64-51 to lead the standings in the First District with 3-0 start. The San Fernando Spartans also scored a win following a 60-57 win over Carcar City Lechoneros and the Naga City Electrifiers rebounded with a 75-71 win against Sibonga Pillars in Sibonga Municipal Gym.
In the competition up north, Madridejos dropped an upset axe over Bogo City, 100-97; Medellin route Santa Fe, 83-63 and Tabogon buried host team San Remegio 95-61; Carmen also drubbed visiting team Catmon 98-74; Danao City proved too much for San Francisco 71-49 and Poro defeated Tudela 61-57 in Poro Municipal gym in Camotes Island.