Mendoza saves day for Mandaue

John Bryan Ulanday (The Philippine Star) - April 22, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The KCS Mandaue Computer Specialists closed out their first-round campaign in the Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup in style, holding off the Dumaguete Warriors, 79-73, at the Alcantara Civic Center in Cebu yesterday.

Former PBA standout Gryann Mendoza delivered 20 points and 10 rebounds laced by the dagger trey in the last 27 seconds to rescue Mandaue from a complete collapse after squandering a 13-point fourth-quarter lead.

Rhaffy Octobre and Dyll Roncal backstopped Mendoza with 13 and 11 markers, respectively, as the Computer Specialists solidified hold of second spot behind unbeaten leader Talisay (5-0) with a 4-1 slate after the first round.

“We just banked on our execution late in the game. Fortunately, our shots connected in time,” said Mendoza, who previously played for the Magnolia Hotshots in the PBA.

Mandaue, fresh from a 77-66 win over ARQ Builders-Lapu-Lapu Tuesday night, built a comfortable 65-52 lead heading into the final canto only to be caught by a blistering 16-2 Dumaguete rally before Mendoza delivered his biggest shot in the game.

Ex-CESAFI MVP Jaybee Mantilla led the Warriors with 21 points, five rebounds, four assists and four steals including a five-point spurt that even pushed them ahead at 68-67 in the last four minutes.

Ronald Roy and Mark Doligon had 13 each for Dumaguete, which settled for a 1-4 card.

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