CEBU CITY — The Southwestern University-Phinma Cobras pulled away late in the fourth period to take down the University of Cebu Webmasters, 65-58, in the 2019 Cesafi men’s basketball tournament on Sunday night, at the Cebu Coliseum.
Trailing for most of the game, the Cobras tightened up their defense in the final period of action and held the Webmasters to a mere six points during that stretch to come away with the win.
Considered by many to challenge for the championship after they won the preseason Partner’s Cup title, SWU-Phinma lived up to their lofty billing by scoring nine unanswered points capped off by a corner triple by Shaquille Imperial at the start of the fourth canto to surge in front, 58-52, 7:35 left in the game.
UC pulled to within two after two consecutive layups by John Jabello but Imperial hit a tough layup of his own followed by a three-pointer and a bucket by SWU’s foreign student-athlete, Lamine Thiam, that came off a crisp cut to the rack, to increase SWU-Phinma’s lead to nine, 65-56, with just 2:18 remaining.
Thiam, the Cobras prolific recruit from Senegal, ended up with 17 points while Imperial punched in 14. Gerald Fernandez came off the bench and provided a spark with 12 markers.
Darrell Shane Menina paced UC with 15 points while Tosh Sesay cashed in 11. Jabello chipped in 10 points in a losing cause.