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3x3 Basketball

Nueva Ecija forges Chooks 3×3 Leg 2 title showdown with Zamboanga City

CALAMBA, LAGUNA — Alvin Pasaol came up clutch for Zamboanga City, pulling off the tight 21-18 victory over the tough Uling Roasters-Butuan City side in Leg 2 of the 2020 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas 3×3 President’s Cup powered by TM, Friday at INSPIRE Academy.

The burly Davao-native fought off JR Alabanza on his drive before completing the and-two play to seal another Finals appearance in this tournament that is sanctioned by the Games and Amusement Board and endorsed by FIBA 3X3.

Pasaol’s three-point play with 1:32 left capped off an amazing fightback for his side as they pulled themselves out of a 16-10 rubble.

Nine of Zamboanga City’s total points came from Pasaol, who was supported by Joshua Munzon’s eight — six coming from beyond the arc.

Chris de Chavez topped Butuan with eight built on three deuces. Meanwhile, Franky Johnson got six in the bitter defeat.

Chooks-to-Go-Pilipinas-3X3-Leg-2-Nueva-Ecija-vs-Pasig-Banal Nueva Ecija forges Chooks 3x3 Leg 2 title showdown with Zamboanga City 3x3 Basketball Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas 3x3 News  - philippine sports news
In the other bracket, Gab Banal sustained Nueva Ecija’s amazing run as the Juan Gomez de Liaño-less Rice Vanguards reached the Finals for the first time in the tour.

The second-generation star caught fire from deep as steered his side to a 22-13 drubbing of Pasig-Sta. Lucia Realtors in the semifinals, Friday at Inspire Sports Academy in Calamba.

Pouring 10 points in the contest, Banal canned four deuces to propel his squad to their first championship appearance.

“Ganun pa rin, lumaro lang kami and look where it got us,” said playing-team manager Jai Reyes.

From a tight 12-11 affair, Banal conspired with Reyes as Nueva Ecija slowly pulled away from Pasig. They put up an 18-12 lead with under four minutes left.

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It was all Banal from there, burying back-to-back long bombs with 3:22 to spare to seal the game for good. The win also locked up the P100,000 incentive.

Reyes added seven points, as the inspired Nueva Ecija side dedicated the feat to Gomez de Liaño, who is still nursing his sprained right ankle.

Still, it was a valiant effort for the Realtors, with Cedrick Ablaza leading the way with seven.

The Realtors reached the semifinals for the first time this season.

David Carlos, on the other hand, retook his throne in the TM Slam Dunk Competition with two perfect jams. He staved off Leg 1 champ Darwin Cantong and Jesus Manay.

Winning the championship, however, won’t be easy. Nueva Ecija will have to take it from Leg 1 champion Zamboanga City in this tournament that airs on BEAMTV Ch. 31, Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas’ Facebook page, and FIBA 3X3’s YouTube Channel.

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