Hapee debuts; Liver Marin vows fightback after 2 losses
Rosalinda L. Orosa (The Philippine Star) - March 23, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Hapee kicks off its drive for a second straight championship as it plays Jumbo Plastic while Tanduay Light seeks a share of the early lead as it squares off with Café France in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup at the JCSGO gym in Cubao, QC today.

Though the Fresh Fighters, winners of the Aspirants’ Cup, will be without top gun Garvo Lanete and the core of the San Beda Red Lions, led by 6-9 Ola Adeogun, they remain the favorites against the Giants in their 3 p.m. clash with Ray Ray Parks, Scottie Thompson, Arnold Van Opstal, Troy Rosario and Chris Newsome spearheading the squad.

Their latest acquisition, Leo Gabo of Mapua, Mike Gamboa, Mark Lopez, Mar Villahermosa, Mark Romero and Arvie Bringas are also expected to provide the spark off the bench.

Focus will also be on Tanduay, which is out to come up with a follow-up to its 79-61 romp over Jumbo Plastic last week and join Cebuana Lhuillier and Kera Mix in the lead.

But against the Bakers in their 1 p.m. duel, the Rhum Masters will be facing a Café France team out to atone for a sorry setback to Cebuana where it blew a 20-point lead in the third quarter and dropped a 75-76 decision.

Meanwhile, Liver Marin vows to bounce back from a pair of setbacks as it pushes its bid for a quarterfinal finish in its maiden stint.

Ranged against more established squads, ATC head coach Rodney Santos said it will only be a matter of time before his players, led by top collegiate stars, would settle down and start winning.

“This is very challenging for me because this is my first time to coach in a semi-pro league. We may have lost our first two games but there’s much room for improvement and I guess this will give us the experience as we grow with D League,” said Santos. “This is also a challenge for my players because we are up against the more experienced teams. But we will try our best to be there fighting every game.”

ARNOLD VAN OPSTAL CEBUANA LHUILLIER AND KERA MIX D LEAGUE D-LEAGUE FOUNDATION CUP GARVO LANETE JUMBO PLASTIC LEO GABO OF MAPUA LIVER MARIN MAR VILLAHERMOSA MARK LOPEZ
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