Norbert Peña contests Sherwin Sayo's shot
STI College Santa Rosa and STI College Global City set up a finals date to determine if this year’s 14th STI Basketball Showdown will be the continuation of a dynasty or the culminating event of a team of destiny. First to secure the finals is STI College Santa Rosa which mustered all the experience they have to dispose last year’s finalist STI College Malolos in a tightly fought game 80 – 77. STI College Global City on the other hand mustered enough intensity in the second half to come from behind amidst a gallant stand by STI College Fairview to get a 68 – 64 win.
STI College Santa Rosa and STI College Malolos engaged in a shoot out at the start of the first quarter as Norbert Pena and Michael Sabino sank 3 and 2 three pointers respectively between them while Levi Pineda on the other hand had 2 during the first quarter. STI College Santa Rosa would threaten to break away but every time they try that STI College Malolos would counter back. The first half ended with both teams back to square one with a 40 – all tie.
Levi Pineda for three
Both teams employed great defense and no team led by as much as five points. It was only in the last three minutes that the four time defending champions took control as their three guards, Norbert Peña, Michael Sabino and Robert Salazar each sank a three-pointer to give the Laguna based cagers a 77 – 70 lead with a minute and a half to go. John Marcelo and Sherwin Sayo would help the Malolos team heave one final run to cut the lead to three until Addis Lizen and Michael Sabino each sank one free throw each to put the game away.
STI College Global City on the other hand took the harder road to the finals as the upset conscious STI College Fairview started like a house on fire but lost steam in the end. The backcourt tandem of Jeff Gustilo and Aldrin Eli ran rings around their defenders to score 19 of the 24 first quarter points of the Fairview squad. The two kept the Regalado based cagers ahead as they scored 16 and 14 pointers respectively to take a 39 – 31 lead at the half as the Global City squad put the cuffs on STI College Fairview center Renz Galvez as he scored only 2 first half points.
After the first half, the Global City cagers woke up, tightened their defense and eventually caught up with the Fairview squad as King Carlos scored six 3rd quarter points to lead the charge that had Jeanssen Pangilinan, Jim Lontoc and Mike Sampurna limit their opponents to just 13 third quarter points. Galvez eventually caught fire in the second half by scoring 12 points but Lontoc and Nappy Napeñas led the charge for the Taguig based cagers to give them a hard earned 68 -64 win and send them to their first finals appearance in this yearly basketball competition.
John Inojales scores on a jumper
FINAL FOUR RESULTS
JUNE 16, 2014
GAME 1: Group A #1 (Santa Rosa) vs. Group B #2 (Malolos)
STI COLLEGE SANTA ROSA (80)
Sabino 15, Peña 14, Salazar 12, Guerrero 10, Lizen 10, Almoro 9, Mamaed 6, Geli 2, Caraan 2, Maunahan 0, Batiquin 0,
STI COLLEGE MALOLOS (77)
Pineda 21, Marcelo 17, Jimenez 11, Sayo 11, Victoria 10, Cruz 5, Latagan 2, Gatchalian 0, Hernandez 0, Bonifacio 0,
Quarter Scores: 22 – 18, 40 – 40, 64 – 59, 80 - 77
GAME 2: Group B #1 (Global City) vs. Group A #2 (Fairview)
STI COLLEGE GLOBAL CITY (68)
Pangilinan 17, Lontoc 12, Sampurna 12, Carlos 10, Napeñas 7, Bernal 4, Sultan 2, Bungar 2, Abuy 2, Baldoza 0, Gubat 0,
STI COLLEGE FAIRVIEW (64)
Eli 18, Gustilo 16, Galvez 14, Ontal 8, Inojales 4, Esteban 2, Arangel 2, Labanon 0, Sanggacala 0, Brillantes 0, Colcol 0, Avenir 0, Sales 0,
Quarter Scores: 16 – 24, 31 – 39, 51 – 52, 68 - 64