LION Tiger-University of Southern Philippines Foundation wasted an early double-digit lead but managed to pull off a 72-69 upset win over second-running Gaisano Capital South-University of Cebu on Tuesday in the Enervon-Cesafi Partner’s Cup at the Cebu Coliseum.
The Panthers improved their win-loss record to 3-6, while dropping the Webmasters to 6-3.
The Panthers enjoyed a 40-27 lead at halftime, thanks to the hot shooting wingman Joseph Sedurifa, who scored 17 of his 25 points during the second period.
But USPF had to dig deep to turn back UC, which gained the lead at 64-62 after a lay-up by Cameroonian import Arnaud Noah midway through the fourth frame.
A difficult lay-up by forward Art Camello with 32 ticks remaining gave the Panthers a 69-67 lead.
UC had a shot at tying the game but its next offensive went nowhere as center Zaid Quintang shot an ill-advised jumper that hit the board, leading to a free-throw by USPF guard Mac Batucan for a 70-67 lead.
Noah responded with a quick two-pointer to cut the deficit but Lawrence Escanilla split his free-throws to give the Panthers a two-point edge, 71-69, with 13.8 on the clock.
Joseph Sedurifa made one of two shots from the stripe with 0.4 of a second left for the final count.
In the other game, San Marino-Cebu Institute of Technology Wildcats beat Raphael’s Sports Bar-University of San Jose-Recoletos 89-67.