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Phoenix, C. France collide

  • Written by Theodore P. Jurado
  • Published in Basketball
  • Read: 203

Games today:

(Strike Gym, Bacoor)

4 p.m. - Cafe France vs Phoenix

6 p.m. - Racal vs Tanduay

FIERCE  rivals Phoenix and Cafe France settle their differences once and for all in the do-or-die PBA D-League Foundation Cup semifinals today at the Strike Gym in Bacoor, Cavite.

The last two D-League champions battle for one final time at 4 p.m., as they will battle tooth and nail for the one of the two championship berths at stake.
   
In the other semis decider, only one from Racal and Tanduay will make history and advance to the Finals for the first time at 6 p.m.
 
The second-ranked Accelerators resigned to the fact that they are facing not only the defending champions, but also the hands down favorites in the season-ending tournament.
   
With Rodrigue Ebondo and Carl Bryan Cruz  around, the Bakers boast one of the most frontlines in the league.
   
“Cafe France is much superior than Phoenix. Blessing na lang din na twice-to-beat kami, but our side will try our best to put up a good fight,” said Phoenix coach Eric Gonzales.
 
To avoid the reversal, as the Aspirants' Cup titlists once again will rely on the trio of Mike Tolomia, Mac Belo, and Ed Daquioag, while the  Accelerators are also pleading for any support from their bench.
   
The Bakers, meanwhile, are hoping to sustain the momentum on  their  78-68 Game 1 victory last Thursday which set the stage for the winner-take-all.
   
“Hopefully, we can bring the same intensity next game,” said Cafe France coach Egay  Macaraya.
 
Tile Masters mentor Caloy Garcia knows that the key for his team is to make the necessary adjustments after dropping a 86-88 decision to the Rhum Masters last Thursday.
   
“They surprised us by doing the same thing with the running game and they were able to build a good lead.  The only lesson to be learned is we can't relax against Tanduay, “ said Garcia, who is hoping to draw a big offensive night from his gunners Jonathan Grey, Jamil Ortuoste and Philip Paniamogan.