Guang Ming College-Tagaytay made a memorable debut in the 5th PG Flex Linoleum-Universities and Colleges Basketball League (UCBL) by downing Lyceum of the Philippines-Batangas, 77-68, on Thursday at the Paco Arena in Manila.
Kurt Lactaotao presided over Guang Ming College’s well-balanced attack with a double-double of 16 points and 12 rebounds in just a little over 24 minutes of play to jumpstart their title bid in the seven-team tournament presented by Vespa.
Three other Guang Ming players scored in double figures in a performance that sent shivers down their rivals’ spines.
Julian Lozada added 11 points and five boards while Joshua Jamias and Jerover Cabilla added 10 points each for Guang Ming which led as much as 18 points as they used a strong start to dominate the game – thanks to 19 second chance points.
Guang Ming of coach Moriah Gingerich was never in trouble after scoring the first four points of the game as they forced their rivals to throw the ball on several occasions behind their sticky defense.
Einster Ramos paced the Pirates with 17 points.
Equally impressive was University of Batangas which produced the first overtime win after outlasting Philippine Christian University-Dasmariñas, 96-90.
Mart Vincent de Ramos led the Brahmans with 19 points, but it was Jan Derick Villarez who delivered the telling blows, knocking down two triples in the extra five minutes of play on the way to a 15-point and seven-rebound show.
UB’s gutsy win put to waste the 25-point and 11-rebound output of PCU’s Gaiel Escultor.
UCBL President Franklin Evidente, meantime, challenged all players of the seven participating to adhere to the ethical principles of the game and always respect officials no matter what during the short opening ceremony.
Meantime, Diliman College launches its three-peat bid on Monday against University of Batangas while Olivarez College will likewise debut against Philippine Christian University.