Generals forge do-or-die game with the Chiefs

2 03 2007

The Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals refused to surrender in Game 2 and sent the series to a rubber match with a 77-65 stopping of the Arellano U Chiefs on Saturday at the 14th Petron-NCRAA men’s basketball finals at their own home turf in UN Manila.

Swingman Ronjay Buenafe unloaded with 15 points, including a huge three-pointer in the third quarter with 3:37 to go for a 60-53 lead. While John Valderama erupted for 14 points to help the Generals force Game 3.

“They couldn’t hold me in the final two quarters after sinking a triple,” said the 23-year-old Buenafe, who played for the Mail & More team in the Philippine Basketball League. “I hope we can win the title.”

Aggressive defense was the main weapon of the day for the Generals particularly in the corners as they clamped down on Arellano U’s big man Orlando Daroya and guard Bonlex Magcawas in the fourth period.

“We made sure that we wore them down with our pressure defense,” EAC mentor Nomar Isla said. “All we can do now is to concentrate in Game 3 and we’re sure the Chiefs will give their best so we have to prepare.”

Two treys from Valderama handed the Generals a 72-59 spread with 2:57 left and the Chiefs never recovered. Alain Musni also added 12 points and 11 rebounds for the Generals, who are now looking for their second NCRAA title.

The Chiefs took a 21-11 bubble in the first quarter, but the Generals came back strong after unleashing a 12-0 run, capped by Buenafe’s dunk with 2:33 left, to seize the edge, 23-21, before the second quarter began.

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