The Cagayan de Oro Higalas averted another endgame collapse and regrouped just in time in the final minute after their 27-point lead was whittled down to just one to beat the Pagadian Explorers, 80-78, tonight at the Manuel Roxas Gymnasium in Roxas, Zamboanga del Norte in the ongoing Pilipinas Super League Pearl of the Orient Cup.

CDO saw their 27-point lead (64-37) almost vanish in a furious Pagadian comeback to close within one, 74-73 with 1:11 left but a Jaybie Mantilla layup and 2 free throws by Nichole Ubalde pushed their lead back to 4 with 10.3 seconds left. Pagadian’s John Apacible made two free throws with no time left for the final count. Ubalde, out of University of San Jose-Recoletos in Cebu, finished with 12 points, 7 rebounds and 5 steals and was named Cocolife Super Player of the Game.


With the win, the CDO grabbed solo third place with a 4-2 win-loss record.

Box Score:

Cagayan de Oro Higalas – 80 – Ubalde 12, Mantilla 11, Lozada 9, Menaling 8, Castellano 6, Diego 6, Galvez 6, Kwong 6, Lastimosa 5, dela Peña 5, Cachuela 4, Pasia 2.

Pagadian Explorers – 78 – Peñaredondo 18, Delator 16, Apacible 14, Quimado 8, Pepito 6, Bangcoyan 4, Pamaran 3, Saludsod 3, Hoyohoy 3, Nalos 2, Cuyos 1, Benitez 0.

Quarterscores: 17-10, 40-26, 64-44, 80-78

Watch the full game below.

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