Santillan hits game-winning free throw as Zamboanga escapes Butuan
Santi Santillan
Courtesy of Chooks-to-Go
Santillan hits game-winning free throw as Zamboanga escapes Butuan
Joey Villar (Philstar.com) - October 28, 2020 - 2:22pm

MANILA, Philippines – Santi Santillan turned garbage into gold late as Family’s Brand Sardines-Zambaonga City edged Uling Roasters-Butuan City, 21-20, to rule the fourth and final leg of the Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas 3x3 President’s Cup powered by TM at the Inspire Sports Academy in Calamba, Laguna Tuesday night.

With the game tied at 20-all, the 6-3 Santillan was just in the right place at the right time as he plucked the offensive rebound off a Joshua Munzon missed jumper and drew a foul from Butuan’s Chris de Chavez that set him up for the potential game-winning free throw that he hit.

Zamboanga thus secured its third title out of the possible four as it also reigned supreme in the first two legs last week that hiked its prize to P300,000.

That is apart from the P50,000 the squad pocketed for topping the pre-season event last October 19.

Now the team, which also consists of Alvin Pasaol and Troy Rike, shoots for biggest prize of all—the whopping P1 million purse staked in the knockout-format Grand Finals set Friday.

“We just gave our 100 percent,” said Santillan in Filipino.

Despite the loss, Butuan still received P100,000 since league owner and Bounty Agro Ventures, Inc. president Ronald Mascarinas pledged the amount to whoever the foe is whenever Zamboanga makes the finale.

Munzon carried the load for his team in most parts by exploding for 11 points including a booming two-pointer that gave them a 20-16 lead and put them on the brink of the crown.

But de Chavez refused to fade away into the night and drained a couple of deuces to knot the count at 20-all before turning into potential hero to goat after he was outrebounded by Santillan and fouled him in the process.

The play sent Santillan, who wound up with six points, to the line for that foul shot that nailed Butuan City’s coffin.

Zamboanga along with Butuan, Nueva Ecija and Pasig-Sta. Lucia Realtors have made the quarters outright in the Grand Finals while the remaining eight teams will be paired against one another in a knockout format.

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