CAFE France overcame a sluggish start to turn back Jose Rizal Univeristy, 86-75, on Thursday in the PBA D-League Aspirants' Cup quarterfinals at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
Paul Desiderio and Rod Ebondo scattered 16 points apiece for the Bakers, who arranged a semifinal match against Racal.
New acquisition Joseph Sedurifa scored 15, including a triple entering the final minute that gave the Bakers an 81-75 advantage.
JK Casiño also scored 15 points for Café France.
JRU pulled to within five, 65-70, approaching the four-minute mark, but Desiderio hit back-to-back triples that sparked an 8-2 surge that gave the Bakers a 78-67 lead.
Cafe France coach Egay Macaraya was not satisfied after the thrilling victory, saying there's a lot of issues to address as they prepare for the match against the second-seeded Tile Masters.
"I think this game really showed that our weakness is when the defense goes to a zone. We must make our outside shots so we can get the ball down to Ebondo," Macaraya said.
Tey Teodoro paced JRU with 18 points, while Jerard Bautista added 14 markers.
Café France 86 - Desiderio 16, Ebondo 16, Casino 15, Sedurifa 15, Calisaan 9, Faundo 6 Arim 3, Jeruta 2, Manlangit 2, Wamar 2, Aquino 0, Guinitaran 0, Veron 0.
JRU 75 - Teodoro 18, Bautista 14, Amboludto 10, Dela Virgen 8, Marquez 8, Publico 7, Lasquety 6, Poutouochi 4, Astilla 0.
Quarterscores: 15-22; 32-38; 65-55; 86-75.