CYRUS Tabi drained the game-winning lay-up at the buzzer to complete Batangas-EAC’s 87-85 upset of Go for Gold in the 2018 PBA D-League Foundation Cup Thursday at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
The Generals battled back from a 10-point hole, 75-65, early in the fourth quarter and slowly chipped away the lead before Clark Bautista tied the game at 85 with 23.9 seconds remaining.
Michael Mabulac then befuddled James Martinez’ drive in the waning seconds, leading to Bautista dishing out the pass to Tabi for the breakaway winner.
“I wasn’t expecting this knowing na Go for Gold is very strong individually. I think were just lucky that we got this one,” said coach Oliver Bunyi.
Mabulac, one of the team’s new acquisitions, paced Batangas-EAC with 19 points and 11 rebounds, Bautista added 16 points and seven boards, while Tabi got 13 in the big win.
Most importantly, the win kept the Generals in the thick of the playoff race with their even 3-3 card.
Meanwhile, the Scratchers fell to their second straight defeat and dropped to 4-2.
Kris Porter led Go for Gold with 22 points and six rebounds, while Martinez and Ron Dennison both had 12 in the loss.
With reports from Gillian Geronimo and Kate Reyes
BATANGAS-EAC 87 — Mabulac 19, Bautista 16, Tabi 13, De Joya 7, Dela Peña 6, Derige 5, De Guzman 5, Laude 5, Arim 4, Austria 4, Manalo 3, Mendoza 0, Saldana 0.
GO FOR GOLD 85 — Porter 22, Dennison 12, Martinez 12, Salem 10, Banal 6, Desiderio 6, Gaco 6, Reyes 5, Cipriano 3, Pili 3, Wong 0.
Quarters: 20-22, 47-48, 62-70, 87-85.