Phoenix-FEU ousts Caida, seals finals date with Cafe France

By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN JUAN, MM--It will be an all-college-based-team PBA D-League Aspirants Cup Finals as Phoenix-FEU booked the second seat to the championship round with a 94-90 semifinals Game 2 victory over Caida at the FilOil Flying V Centre on Tuesday.

The Accelerators bounced back from a poor second quarter showing by an impressive third quarter performance before surviving a close encounter with the Tile Masters in the final quarter to complete the 2-0 sweep of their semifinal series.

Caida, trying to force do-or-die Thursday, went on a 28-point second quarter to take a 54-46 halftime lead, even leading by as much as 13 late in the period.

But Phoenix-FEU crawled back and countered with a 26-15 third quarter scoreline to reclaim the lead, 72-69.

Both clubs engaged in a tight battle in the first part of the fourth quarter before the Accelerators opened an 88-81 cushion with 1:33 remaining.

But a 9-4 run by the Tile Masters sparked and capped by Jonathan Grey cut the lead to just two, 92-90, with 15.6 seconds remaining.

They stayed in the game after Mac Belo only made one of two free throws that slightly stretched the Accelerators' lead to three with 14 seconds left, but Joseph Terso missed a potential game-tying three-pointer with five seconds left.

Raymar Jose sealed Phoenix-FEU's victory with a split of his own even as Dexter Maiquez missed another triple at the final horn.

Ed Daquioag led the Accelerators with 22 points on 6-of-8 field goals and a perfect 9-of-9 free throws, while Mike Tolomia made up for a sluggish showing from beyond the arc with his superb passing, dishing out six assists along with his 17 points for the Accelerators, who will take on the Cafe France-CEU Bakers in the finals beginning Thursday.

Grey finished with 22 points off the bench for Caida.

Box Scores:

Phoenix-FEU 94-Daquioag 22, Tolomia 17, Mendoza 14, Pogoy 13, Belo 11, Jose 9, Ru. Escoto 4, Andrada 4, Ri. Escoto 0, IƱigo 0, Tamsi 0

Caida 90-Grey 22, Maiquez 11, Terso 11, Jalalon 9, Javier 8, Nambatac 7, Paniamogan 7, Gabawan 6, Perkins 5, Ruaya 4, Robles 0, Cabrera 0

Quarterscores: 28-26, 46-54, 72-69, 94-90

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