September 12, 2019
Marinerong Pilipino and Centro Escolar University (CEU) seek to quickly finish off their respective foes in the quarterfinals of the 2019 Philippine Basketball Association Developmental League (PBA D-League) Foundation Cup today at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Armed with twice-to-beat advantages, the Skippers take on AMA Online Education at 1:30 p.m. while the Scorpions collide with Asia’s Lashes at 3:30 p.m. in the Group A playoffs.
Marinero secured the top seed after sweeping the elimination round capped by an 88-74 win over CEU last Moday.
The Skippers are keen on sailing to the semifinals for the first time since entering the D-League in 2017.
But Marinero head coach Yong Garcia knows it will be tough against AMA as his Skippers needed to buck an 18-point meltdown to pull off an 81-72 win over the Titans in their first faceoff.
“We had a close game against AMA. We really need to prepare for them,” said Garcia, who will bank on ex-PBA players Eloy Poligrates, Jay-R Alabanza and Dan Sara.
On the other hand, AMA will try to spoil Marinero’s semifinal bid behind former Ateneo cagers Aaron Black and Vince Tolentino along with Dennis Santos and Andre Paras.
The Titans wound up with a 3-3 record to seal the fourth seed and get a shot at a maiden semifinal spot since joining the developmental ranks in 2014.
Meanwhile, Aspirant’s Cup runner-up CEU is eyeing a repeat of its conference-opening 107-77 dismantling of Asia’s Lashes last August 30 for an easy trip back to the final four.
Veteran tactician Derrick Pumaren wants his young Scorpions led by Malick Diouf, Kurt Sunga and captain Rich Guinitaran to play their A-game.
“We know we’re a young team but we’re going to keep on playing as hard as we can,” said Pumaren, whose squad finished with a 5-1 slate in the eliminations.
CEU will face a veteran-laden team in Asia’s Lashes spearheaded by James Martinez, James Castro and Jeson Delfinado.
The Soldiers snared the third seed after tallying a 4-2 card in the elimination round.
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