Magis Eagles Soar, Ateneo de Cebu back on top after winning Cesafi high school crown

Jonas Panerio

(UPDATED)--In a hard-fought match between two high school basketball powerhouses separated by a few miles and different shades of blue, it was the SHS-Ateneo de Cebu Magis Eagles’ steadiness that proved the difference as they got crucial baskets from MVP LA Casinillo and cat-quick guard Mike Boniel to put down the University of Cebu Baby Webmasters, 55-52, and capture the title in Game Two of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (CESAFI) high school basketball finals at the Cebu Coliseum on Thursday, November 21, 2019.

The win gave the Magis Eagles a 2-0 series sweep of the erstwhile high school champions. They won Game 1, 74-69. The championship is Ateneo de Cebu’s fifth overall and first since the 2016 season.

UC was hell-bent on extending the series and led for most of the way. They remained in front for the last time at 48-46, but Casinillo scored on a floater and then, Boniel had an and-one to give Ateneo de Cebu the lead, 51-48, with 2:34 remaining.

The Baby Webmasters stayed with it and pulled to within one, 50-51, after a bucket from Luther Leonard, but the Magis Eagles were relentless, getting another teardrop from Casinillo to extend the lead, 53-50, time down to 1:31.

The Baby Webmasters stayed alive after Vanvan Sevillejo stole the ball and went all the way for a lay-up but Casinillo was clutch, canning two pressure-packed free-throws with 10 seconds remaining to give the Magis Eagles a 55-52 cushion.

UC’s final offensive then went nowhere as Sevillejo got the ball stolen away from him by Casinillo as Ateneo de Cebu dribbled out the clock to secure the victory and usher in a raucous celebration from their fellow students and supporters.

Ariel Dinglasan picked the perfect time to have his best game of the season as he had a double-double of 19 points and 10 rebounds while Casinillo had 11 markers and four boards.(SunStar Cebu)