Cignal-San Beda will try to stretch its winning streak to seven games when it battles Jose Rizal University (JRU) in the 2017 Philippine Basketball Association D-League Aspirants’ Cup today at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
After grabbing the first quarterfinals ticket with an 83-68 win over Victoria Sports-MLQU last Tuesday, the Hawkeyes brace for a tougher quarterfinals round.
“We have to level up our games as the tournament goes on,” said Fernandez as his wards clash with the Heavy Bombers at 5 p.m.
In the first game, Wangs Basketball (2-5) will try to keep its quarterfinals bid alive as it faces the winless and also ran Blustar Detergent (0-6) at 3 p.m.
Cignal drew 16 points and 11 rebounds from Jason Perkins in its big win over Victoria Sports to fortify its hold of the top spot with a 6-1 win-loss mark.
Fernandez will also lean on the services of Andres Cahilig, Davon Potts, Robert Bollick, and Pamboy Raymundo as they try to extend their winning streak to seven.
“After our conference opener loss [to AMA], we have regained our confidence,” added Fernandez.
But the Hawkeyes should not take their opponent lightly as the Heavy Bombers of head coach Vergel Meneses are coming off a stunning 77-75 upset win over the erstwhile unbeaten Racal.
JRU will rely on Tey Teodoro and Paolo Pontejos, who combined for 17 points in the final canto in their huge win against the Tile Masters to improve its mark to 3-3.
The Couriers are also coming off an upset win against AMA Online Education, 98-93, to keep their flickering hope alive.
Leading Wangs are Von Tambeling and Rey Publico while Blustar’s Tristan Perez and Jason Melano will try to lead the Dragons to their first ever win in the conference.