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Regional league club pulls epic comeback from 38 down

Mon Mabayo points up to the sky after QC completed a comeback from 38 points down to stun San Juan in the CBA Pilipinas Founders Cup quarterfinals. CBA Pilipinas
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—It was a busy Sunday in basketball for the Filipino fans.

The PBA Commissioner's Cup—and Ray-Ray Parks's PBA career—officially began, and the Jr. NBA Philippines All-Stars were named at the end of the three-day national training camp.

Not to mention the Golden State fans rejoicing after their team stunned Portland on the road in Game 3 of the NBA Western Conference Finals.

But behind the limelight, a comeback of epic proportions took place.

The Quezon City Capitals turned what seemed like an insurmountable lead into a shock loss for the San Juan Knights, although not in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League.

While the MPBL is in the offseason, some of QC and San Juan's key players strut their stuff in other regional leagues like the Community Basketball Association Pilipinas.

On Sunday, CBA Pilipinas reached its quarterfinal phase, and a triple-header was headlined by the game between the Capitals and the Knights at the San Juan Gymnasium.

With the likes of Joseph Marquez still on a high note a month into being the MPBL champ, San Juan issued a statement to QC late in the second quarter, opening a 60-22 lead, the biggest in the game.

However, the Capitals came alive in the second half, slowly chipping away the 38-point lead, and eventually, Kim Medina scored on a layup with 20 seconds left to give them the lead, 86-85.

Marquez tried to salvage the Knights, but he missed on a jumper and Mon Mabayo added another free throw for the eventual final tally, 87-85.

Marquez still showed heart in the endgame as he tried another game winner this time from deep, but he muffed again the basket as time expired.

Joco Tayongtong made 25 points to lead QC, while Medina and Mabayo each added 16.

Marquez finished with 17 points, six rebounds, one assist, and three steals for San Juan.

The other two quarterfinals also went down the wire.

Valenzuela needed overtime before pipping Malabon, 107-106, and Caloocan went on a late run to put away a comeback-bidding San Mateo squad, 96-90.

Box Scores:

First Game
Valenzuela 107-Ruaya 17, Dedicatoria 16, Gimpayan 15, Rivera 13, Kalaw 12, Alcober 11, Ch. De Chavez 8, Martinez 7, Ortega 6, Pastrana 2, Lacamento 0, Ca. De Chavez 0

Malabon 106-Casin 23, Natividad 20, Ingles 13, Angeles 10, Aquino 8, Parungao 8, Pagayunan 7, Albo 6, Dela Cruz 4, Gallardo 4, Atabay 3, Bruno 0

Quarterscores: 21-26, 47-43, 65-69, 94-94, 107-106

Second Game
Caloocan 96-Rivera 18, Lunor 16, Santos 15, Palencia 12, Fontanilla 9, Hallare 8, Sombero 6, Tiquia 6, Manacho 6, Decano 0, Peñaredondo 0, Principe 0

San Mateo 90-Sevilla 27, Castillo 19, Gumaru 12, Lasco 12, Malilim 6, Urganay 6, Magalangcom 4, Marilao 2, Duran 2

Quarterscores: 25-23, 53-41, 75-62, 96-90

Third Game
Quezon City 87-Tayongtong 25, Medina 16, Mabayo 16, Derige 12, Castro 8, Barua 8, Macaraig 2, Bellosillo 0

San Juan 85-Marquez 17, Saret 16, Lugo 13, Buñag 8, Ubalde 8, Bonifacio 6, Garcia 6, Astrero 5, Acol 4, Rosopa 2

Quarterscores: 37-12, 62-30, 74-62, 87-85

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno