Sharks down Pioneers in Game 1

VETERAN forward Sherwin Resilla drained a jumper as time expired to lift the Accenture Sharks past the reigning champions Sykes Pioneers, 70-68, in Game 1 of the best-of-three championship series in the Elite Classic division of the Tanduay Athletics E-Leagues for Basketball Season 15 at the City Sports Club-Cebu on Saturday, Feb. 1, 2020.

Resilla’s heroic shot capped off Accenture’s frenzied comeback from nine points down, 56-65, with five minutes remaining in the game. A 12-3 run punctuated by a putback by Edsun Tabar and a lay-up by Ryan Veloso tied the game up at 68-all with 19.7 seconds to go.

Sykes had a shot at taking the lead but squandered it, committing a shot-clock violation. Accenture then took advantage, getting the ball to Resilla at the top of the key. The former Cebu Institute of Technology-University standout then faked out Sykes big man Mark Olmilla, before leaning in and making a jumper right before the final buzzer sounded to send the Sharks and their faithful into a frantic celebration.

Point guard Junas Misa led the Sharks with 17 points, seven rebounds, four assists and two steals while Veloso registered a double-double of 16 points and 11 rebounds.

Resilla finished with 12 markers, four boards and five assists while Tabar chipped in 10. Aldene Batino filled the stat-sheet up with seven points, 11 rebounds, three assists and four steals.

It was a sorry loss for Sykes, which is gunning for a second straight title. Now, it needs to win Game 2 scheduled on Sunday, Feb. 2, to keep its title reign alive.

Earl Montilla led Sykes with 12 points while Olmilla added 11. Janjan Auditor, Sykes’ main man who is still recovering from a groin injury, ended up with 10.

Meanwhile, the Contact Solutions Flying Lemurs also took a step closer to winning the Evo League title after it trounced the Kyocera Frontiers, 74-65.

Joey Juntilla scored 13 points, including a fadeaway jumper with a minute left that sealed the series-opening win for the Lemurs. The forward also hauled down 10 rebounds.

The backcourt of Cyril Gayo and Kim Reyes also did damage for Contact Solutions, which took control of the game with a 21-12 run in the second canto. (JNP)