Head coach Stevenson Tiu was relieved to see his Che’Lu Bar & Grill-San Sebastian College snap its losing skid in the Philippine Basketball Association Developmental League (PBA D-League) Aspirants’ Cup 2018.
The Revellers halted a two-game slide as they trounced Jose Rizal University (JRU), 74-67, on Thursday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
“It really was a big relief,” said Tiu, whose squad improved to a 3-3 win-loss record for a solo eighth in the 12-team arena.
Raring to get back on the winning track, Che’Lu-San Sebastian erected a 25-11 lead in the opening quarter. JRU though slowly reduced the deficit even took a 41-39 advantage on Jeckster Apinan’s basket in the third period.
Allyn Bulanadi then caught fire as the wingman dropped 10 points in a blazing 27-9 run bridging the final two frames, giving the Revellers a commanding 66-50 lead with 5:22 left.
The Bombers closed the gap, 61-66, after draining 11 straight points. But former pro Samboy De Leon hit a dagger triple to end the Revellers’ three-minute scoring drought and foiled their foes’ potential comeback.
“Had we lost this game, I don’t think we have a chance in the quarterfinals. Not to belittle JRU but if we cannot win over them, I don’t think we can win over Zark’s (Zark’s Burger-Lyceum of the Philippines University) or Marinero (Marinerong Pilipino),” said Tiu.
“Fortunately, we won. A win is still a win,” he added.
Bulanadi, who came off the bench, fired a game-best 26 points anchored on six triples while big man Jeepy Faundo flirted with a double-double, tallying 13 markers and nine boards
Apinan was the only bright spot for JRU as the veteran forward finished with 14 points and eight rebounds. The Bombers stumbled to a share of No. 10 with their third consecutive loss after a rousing debut.
The Revellers will have a five-day off before their next assignment against Go For Gold-College of St. Benilde.