SMDC-NU battled back from a 19-point deficit and scored a huge 74-67 upset win over erstwhile unbeaten Centro Escolar University on Thursday in the 2019 PBA D-League at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
Dave Ildefonso punctuated the shocker, unleashing 12 of his 21 points in the fourth period, including the game’s final nine points to seal off the triumph and steer the Bulldogs to their first back-to-back victories this season. He also added six rebounds in the triumph.
Shaun Ildefonso added 14 points and eight boards off the bench, while Senegalese big man Issa Gaye had 10 points and 15 rebounds.
"Two straight wins after the Holy Week pero parang three months na kami magpe-penitensya eh. I think it's time for us to resurrect ourselves," said a jubilant coach Jamike Jarin.
SMDC-NU crawled its way back from a 41-22 deficit early in the third before getting back in the game with a superb 31-point eruption.
Mindful of their meltdowns in the past, the Bulldogs made sure to lock this one up as Gaye's undergoal stab at the 4:24 mark sparked the 11-3 finishing salvo as they stayed alive in the playoff race with a 2-5 win-loss card in the Foundation Group.
"We showed character today and that's what we're looking for," said Jarin.
CEU saw its six-game win streak snapped as well as its run to the playoffs halted in the loss. It dropped to 6-1 for the season.
Tyron Chan led the Scorpions with 16 points, seven rebounds, four steals and two assists, as John Formento had 14 off the bench.
Senegalese slotman Maodo Malick Diouf was held to just two points, though he was able to grab 19 rebounds and rejected five shots.
SMDC-NU 74 - D. Ildefonso 21, S. Ildefonso 14, Gaye 10, Minerva 9, Galinato 6, Clemente 4, Oczon 3, Rangel 3, Gallego 2, Yu 2, Diputado 0, Sistoza 0, Mangayao 0, Malonzo 0, Tibayan 0.
CEU 67 - Chan 16, Formento 14, Fuentes 13, Uri 11, Diaz 7, Lisbo 4, Diouf 2, Ke. Caballero 0, Rojas 0, Abastillas 0.
Quarterscores: 9-23; 22-39; 53-55; 74-67.