Malick Diouf shone bright as Centro Escolar University (CEU) made quick work of iWalk, 120-84, booking a return trip to the playoffs in the 2019 Philippine Basketball Association Developmental League Foundation Cup on Thursday at the JCSGO Gym in Quezon City.
Senegalese center Diouf posted a double-double of 29 points and 21 rebounds, to tow previous conference’s runners-up Scorpions to their fourth win in as many games in Group A.
“Our objective is really to win so that we will not go into a tie with this team (iWalk) and have a complication in the next round,” said CEU assistant coach Gabby Velasco. Head mentor Derrick Pumaren missed the game because of a personal emergency.
Velasco pointed out the Scorpions’ porous defense in the third quarter that allowed the Chargers to score 31 points.
“We have to check our third quarter. We gave up so many three points and they scored so much. So, we have to check our defense,” said Velasco.
Team captain Rich Guinitaran fired 21 points highlighted by five triples to go with six rebounds while Kurt Sunga finished with 17 markers, nine assists and four boards for the Aspirant’s Cup runner-up.
Eric Tuadles chipped in 12 points.
CEU started hot en route to posting a commanding 65-36 halftime lead using a balanced assault.
After a sloppy third frame, the Scorpions relaunched their offensive resulting in a 39 points lead, 116-77, highlighted by Diouf’s layup late in the game.
Bernie Bregondo had 19 points and 12 rebounds while Wowie Escosio had 14 markers and six boards for the Chargers, who fell to 1-3.
Achie Iñigo and Janus Lozada had 11 points each in the loss.