MANILA, Philippines – ARQ Builders-Lapu-Lapu fended off Dumaguete, 67-57, for its second straight win in the inaugural Chooks-to-Go-Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup Tuesday at the Alcantara Civic Center in Cebu.
The Heroes led by as many as 16 points but needed timely hits from ex-pros Reed Juntilla and Jerick Cañada to survive the Warriors for a good follow-up to their 75-61 opener win against Tabogon.
Cebuano ace Juntilla posted 12 points, four rebounds and three assists while skipper Canada uncorked a 9-8-6 line including the dagger trey in the last minute as Ferdinand Lusdoc also chipped in 14.
“We struggled in the first half but we adjusted well in defense and communication in offense in the third period onwards,” said Juntilla, who had stints with Barako Bull, Meralco and Air21 in the PBA.
Up by just two after two quarters, Lapu-Lapu found its groove in the second half for a 61-45 separation before allowing a near Dumaguete fightback.
The Warriors moved to within 54-61 off a Jerick Nacpil jumper but Juntilla found Lusdoc for an open lay-up then Canada hit a triple in crunch time to seal the deal for the Heroes.
John Monteclaro racked up 20 markers and four boards while Nacpil added 10 for the Warriors, who also succumbed to Siquijor last weekend, 100-105, for a 0-2 start.
At 2-0, Lapu-Lapu momentarily had the lead in the seven-team Visayas leg as fellow opening-week winners MJAS Zenith-Talisay (1-0) and KCS – Mandaue (1-0) were still playing as of press time.
Winless squads Tubigon Bohol (0-1) and Tabogon (0-1) likewise were fighting for breakthrough victories as of this writing.
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