MANILA – Cignal-Ateneo Blue Eagles reached the finals of the 2019 PBA D-League after a 100-73 victory over Valencia City Bukidnon-SSCR Golden Harvest in the quarterfinals at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Ilonggo Ferdinand “Thirdy” Ravena III led the way with 19 points, with 14 coming in the first half, to go with five rebounds, five assists, two steals, and one block on Thursday night.
George Isaac Go added 13 markers. Ivorian import Angelo Kouame also registered a double-double with 12 points and 18 rebounds.
The Blue Eagles progressed to its first PBA D-League Finals appearance.
“Everything that we’re doing is in preparation for the UAAP. It’s a big help for us entering the Finals but we can’t be happy with just that,” said Blue Eagles assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga.
Trailing 14-26 early in the first quarter, the Blue Eagles leaned on the exploits of Ravena for a 50-45 halftime edge before pulling away for good in the second half for a 70-47 lead.
RK Ilagan tallied 22 points, 11 rebounds and five assists, while Alvin Capobres got 14 markers for the Golden Harvest, which lost veteran Allyn Bulanadi in the first quarter due to a dislocated right shoulder.
The reigning UAAP men’s basketball champions now await their date for the best-of-five titular showdown between Centro Escolar University Scorpions and St. Clare College Virtual Reality Saints.
The Saints kept its finals hopes alive following a wire-to-wire 84-50 victory over the undermanned Scorpions. The do-or-die game between the two teams is slated on Tuesday./PN