The Pagadian Explorers will look to pull off another upset when they face off against the powerhouse JPS Zamboanga City in the 2021 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup Mindanao leg on Tuedsay at the Ipil Provincial Gymnasium in Zamboanga Sibugay.
Pagadian, which boasts of a team composed primarily of homegrown players, have their work cut out for them when they battle a Zamboanga City team that is coming off a dominant 89-53 win over Kapatagan last week. Tip-off is at 12 noon.
The Explorers, though, have some momentum on their side especially after squeaking past Petra Cement Roxas, 82-80, in overtime. Guard Von Lloyd Dechos hit the biggest shot of that game when he swished a corner triple that put Pagadian in front for good.
Head coach Harold Sta. Cruz lauded his wards after the match, pointing out that it was their focus on defense that allowed them to hack out the victory.
"Ako kasi defensive coach ako. Nagagalit ako kapag hindi sila bumababa sa defense kasi sabi ko nga sa kanila magpapanalo sa atin depensa," said the former Letran ace.
Zamboanga City, though, is a whole different animal with the presence of a slew of experienced and skilled cagers such as Mark Cardona, Kyle Neypes, Gino Jumao-as, Rudy Lingganay, Jaypee Belencion, Gabby Espinas and Jerwin Gaco among others.
Meanwhile, Basilan is also looking to get a piece of the top when it tangles with the winless Vanguards at 2 p.m. The Peace Riders did not break a sweat in the league's opening game, crushing ALZA Alayon Zamboanga del Sur, 82-48. (JNP)