BIG CHILL nailed an important victory just days after trading their second-leading scorer, whipping Cebuana Lhuillier 93-73 on Tuesday to boost their quarterfinal bid in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup at the JCSGO gym in Quezon City.
Janus Lozada erupted for Big Chill, scoring 26 points on 6-of-9 shooting from beyond-the-arc in the team’s first outing since Alex Nuyles was shipped to EA Regen Medical Group for Jeckster Apinan.
Terrence Romeo added 22 points and dished out nine assists, while Mac Montilla added 14 points for the Superchargers.
Apinan grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds and scored four points in his first game with the Superchargers.
Big Chill pulled to an even 5-5 win-loss card with one game to go in the eliminations. They tied Cebuana Lhuillier for eighth place, improving their bid to make it to the six-team quarterfinals.
Fruitas (6-3) and EA Regen Medical Group (5-3) are in the third and fourth spots, followed by Boracay Rum, Café France, and Cagayan Valley, who are tied for fifth at 5-4.
The third to sixth placers advance to the quarterfinals with the top two placers taking a twice-to-beat advantage in their series.
The battle for position in the standings resumes next week as the D-League takes a one-week break, with the PBA holding its All Star weekend in Digos City.
“I think ’yung intensity ng mga bata, alam naman natin kung saan kami ngayon. Ang mindset nila, it’s a must-win. Doon nakita ang laro nila,” said Big Chill coach Robert Sison.
“Lumabas ang laro nila Janus, Terrence, and Mac,” said Sison, when asked to assess their first game without Nuyles, who had averaged 12.3 points in their previous games.
Romeo had 15 points in the first period that saw Big Chill take a 25-14 lead. Lozada scored 13 points in the second as the Superchargers pulled away, 52-26, at halftime.
June Dizon had 15 points and 11 rebounds for Cebuana Lhuillier.
Big Chill (93) – Lozada 26, Romeo 22, Montilla 14, Bringas 10, Bonifacio 4, Holstein 4, Canlas 4, Apinan 4, Villahermosa 3, Santos 2, Heruela 0, Dumapig 0.
Cebuana Lhuillier (73) – Dizon 15, Padilla 10, Bautista 9, Elinon 8, Aguilar 7, Martinez 6, Zamar 6, Lopez 6, Sarangay 3, Montecastro 2, Buensuceso 1, Leynes 0.
Quarterscores: 25-14; 52-26; 72-56; 93-73.