Second-ranked La Union booked a Chooks-to-Go National Basketball League Chairman’s Cup Finals rematch with top seed Pampanga, Sunday.
This as the PAOwer decimated Muntinlupa, 107-84, to sweep their semifinals series at the Bren Z. Guiao Convention Center in San Fernando, Pampanga.
But it was not without a scare from the Water Warriors.
Trailing by 18 in the third period, Muntinlupa clawed back with 13 straight points, capped by Arnold Danga’s deuce. They inched within five, 76-81.
However, La Union had one last blast in them to clinch the last Finals ticket.
The second-seeded squad went on a 15-3 burst to restore order and establish an insurmountable 17-point lead, 96-79, with 4:25 to go.
The PAOwer opened the game on a scorching 19-2 blitz but the Water Warriors’ bench came in to restore order.
Jayson Apolonio tallied a monster double-double of 24 points and 15 rebounds alongside three assists, two steals, and a block.
Billy Boado and Ian Llona delivered 18 points apiece while Mitchelle Maynes had 10 points and seven rebounds off the bench.
Muntinlupa’s balanced attack was led by Hilario Sabado with 13 points off the bench. Andre Montserrat and Manu Codiñera also got 11 and 10 points as bench players.
Biboy Enguio was limited to just five points on a 2-of-10 shooting. All the other four starters also failed to reach double figures.
La Union 107 – Apolonio 24, Boado 18, Llona 18, Maynes 10, Silverie 7, Francisco 7, Pambid 6, Blaza 4, Gatchalian 2, Gurtiza 2, Caasi 0, Pascua 0, Doliente 0.
Muntinlupa 84 – Sabado 13, Montserrat 11, Codiñera 10, Madanlo 9, Danga 8, Villablanca 8, Arias 7, Stevens 5, Enguio 5, Panganiban 5, Udal 0.
Quarterscores: 27-24, 49-43, 81-66, 107-84.