MANILA – Undermanned Centro Escolar University Scorpions pulled off a stunning 84-74 win over Go for Gold-CSB Scratchers in a do-or-die quarterfinals of the 2019 PBA D-League at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Maodo Malick Diouf played his hearts out for all 40 minutes on Thursday night. He registered 25 points, 29 rebounds, three assists, two steals, and two blocks.
Jerome Santos added 15 points and six rebounds while Rich Guinitaran had 11 points.
Ilonggo Franz Diaz also contributed 10 markers for the Scorpions, which will face St. Clare Virtual Reality Saints in the semifinals.
The Scorpions were forced to field just seven players in the match after expelling seven others from its roster, including Negrense John Lisbo, for their involvement in game fixing.
“’Yung seven players, na-involve sa game-fixing and we have strong evidences and they admitted it and they’re out of the team. We cannot tolerate it,” said Scorpions head coach Frederick Pumaren.
After seeing its 17-point edge cut to 64-68 midway in the fourth, Diouf spearheaded a huge 10-2 scoring run for the Scorpions to establish a 78-66 edge with 2:34 remaining in the match.
“I’m happy for the boys, lalo na ‘yung naglarong seven, lalo na kay Malick. He’s been our game changer sa league na ito,” Pumaren said.
Roosevelt Adams finished with double-double 26 points and 11 rebounds while Gabriel Banal collected 18 points, six boards, and six assists for the Scratchers./PN