Dragons a win away

December 03, 2018
Kevine Gandjeto
Gandjeto: Another big game for the big man.

DILIMAN College is one win away from winning another title -- the Universities and Colleges Basketball League (UCBL).

The Dragons displayed the heart of a champion when they needed it most to bring down Olivarez  College, 80-71, in Game 1 of their  scheduled  best-of-three title series at the Olivarez gym in Parañaque.

Import Kevine Gandjeto and John Mahari provided the spark for the Blue Dragons, who fell behind for three quarters but outscored the Sea Lions, 39-23, in the  payoff period  to  escape with the win.

Gandjeto, a prized find from Cotonou, Benin, finished  with another double-double of   21 points and 14 rebounds, while   Mahari added 20 points for the Quezon City-based  team, which beat the Sea Lions for the third time  this conference.

The Blue Dragons of  Diliman College  president and former Sen. Nikki Coseteng and coach Rensy Bajar can wrap up another major title with another victory on Thursday.

“We hope  we can sustain our winning ways  and clinch the championship on Thursday,” said Bajar, who is  credited  for turning Diliman as one of the most-successful  collegiate teams in  recent years.

“As I expected, Olivarez is a tough team. We really had a difficult time matching  up  against them.  But the  boys did not give up and continue to work on our game. Fortunately, our defense clicked in the fourth  period,” added Bajar,  also the first assistant coach of  Pido Jarencio in the NorthPort Batang Pier in the PBA.

Olivarez, which earned the right to meet Diliman by eliminating last  year’s champion  Centro Escolar University, took control for three quarters.

But they had  no answer to the  Dragons in the fourth period.

Bajar, the  coaching staff and the players shared the success to  the team’s biggest supporters, Sen. Coseteng and Jerome Ngo and Wilson Sia of Gerry’s Grill, for their continued trust  and confidence.

The scores:

Diliman (80)-- Gandjeto 21, Mahari 20, Coquia 10, Enriquez 9, Darang 6, J. Salazar  5, Lisika 4, Bauzon 0, Sombero 0, E. Salazar 0.

Olivarez (71) -- Saguiguit 22, Castro 13, Almajeda 13, Lalata 9, Uduba 6, Elie 6, Geronimo 2, Complete 0, Begaso 0, Siegue 0, Santos 0, Sala 0.

Quarterscores: 12-15, 23-33, 41-48; 80-71.