JOSHUA dela Cerna continued his strong bid for the Rookie of the Year award as he led Cebu Institute of Technology-University to a 73-68 win over University of Southern Philippines Foundation in the 2013 Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) men’s basketball tournament late Thursday at the Cebu Coliseum.
The rookie forward registered 28 points and completed a double-double effort with 10 boards on top of two steals, and one block as he powered the Wildcats to their first win of the season after losses to University of San Jose-Recoletos and reigning champion Southwestern University.
The wards of head coach and former pro Gilbert Demape also got 14 points from lefty wingman Franklin Batiquin, who provided ample support with the star two-guard Floyd Taboada failing to score in double figures with just eight points.
The Panthers actually led for most of the game but lost steam in the end when their frontcourt combination of Art Camello and Jomari Sollano fouled out one after the other. The latter provided the length and the muscle for the Panthers with 13 points, 13 rebounds, and four blocked shots.