GUARDS Joshua David and Joel Cagulangan came up with sizzling plays in the endgame to lift La Salle Greenhills to a 75-74 win over Malayan High School yesterday at The Arena in San Juan.
Joshua David led with a season-high 27 points and came off with a big steal in the remaining four seconds to power the Greenies to their first-ever championship in the 93rd National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) junior basketball tournament.
The 6’0” David made up for two missed free throws in the last 14 seconds with a steal off a fallen Warren Bonifacio, forcing a turnover with four ticks to go.
Cagulangan, who is the finals’ MVP, delivered 19 points, including two charities in the final 37.3 seconds off Carl Lacap’s foul allowing the Greenies to finalize the count and overtake the Red Robins for the last time.
“We had high expectations. We had high hopes. Going into the season, we were looking for a championship. But it was a long way, and we were hopeful all throughout,” said Greenies’ coach Marvin Bienvenida.
Clint Escamis banged in 21 points for the Red Robins, with his drive past forward Inand Fornilos shattering a 70-all deadlock with 2:43 left, 72-70.
But David’s triple 30 seconds later kept the Greenies in front, 73-72.
Bonifacio, who had 10 points and 20 rebounds, then knocked in two charities in the final 1:09, giving the Red Robins, the lead for one final time, 75-74, before the heroics of Cagulangan and David sealed Malayan High School’s doom as it failed to capture what could have been a 22nd secondary basketball title. Peter Atencio