KEN Acibar led a torrid start before Maclean Sabellina put the finishing touches in Boracay Rum’s 69-65 win over Blackwater Sports on Thursday that forged a rubber match in their PBA D-League Foundation Cup semifinal series at the Blue Eagle Gym.
Acibar had nine of his 14 points in the first quarter, while Sabellina came up with 10 of his 14 markers in the fourth as Boracay Rum evened the series at one game apiece.
Game Three is set on Tuesday at the Blue Eagle Gym.
“It kept us alive,” Waves coach Lawrence Chongson said.” But it’s not time to celebrate. Anything goes for Game Three.”
Acibar scored seven straight points in the final minutes of the first period and Boracay took a 16-9 lead into the second quarter.
Sabellina staved off Blackwater Sports’ comeback bid, answering with baskets when the Elite were chopping down their lead. He hit a basket at the 1:42 mark of the fourth to make it a 64-57 lead.
The Elite were able to cut the deficit to just two points with 16.9 seconds remaining in the fourth but Jonathan Fernandez sank two free throws to seal the win.
Fernandez, a midseason acquisition after suiting up for the Sports Rev Thailand Slammers in the Asean Basketball League, had nine points. Raymund Ilagan grabbed 10 rebounds, while Marcy Arellano had seven assists.
Kevin Ferrer and Gio Ciriacruz had 14 points each for the Elite, who won Game One 70-62.
Allan Mangahas, who in Game One had 14 points, was limited to five points by Boracay Rum’s defense led by Lucas Tagarda.
“From the start palang, sabi ko kay Tagarda, sundan mo hanggang CR,” said Chongson.
Boracay Rum (69) – Acibar 14, Sabellina 14, Fernandez 9, Eguilos 7, Ilagan 7, Arellano 5, Siruma 4, Tagarda 3, Pasculado 2, Cabrera 2, Taha 2, Viernes 0.
Blackwater Sports (65) – Ferrer 14, Ciriacruz 14, Celiz 11, Chua 7, Vigil 7, Suguitan 6, A. Mangahas 5, Austria 1, Bagatsing 0, Pe 0, Llagas 0.
Quarterscores: 16-9; 35-27; 53-41; 69-65.