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Bread gains quarterfinals

Games Thursday Ynares Arena, Pasig City
2 p.m. – Bread Story-Lyceum vs Café France
4 p.m. – Jumbo Plastic vs Cebuana Lhuillier

Bread Story-Lyceum teetered on the brink of defeat in the closing seconds but hung on to beat Racal Motors, 93-90, on Monday to advance to the quarterfinals of the PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup at the Marikina Sport Complex.

Wilson Baltazar hit a clutch 3-point shot to tie game at 90-90 with 38 seconds remaining before Aziz Mbomiko nailed the go-ahead from 15-feet 13 seconds later to complete the come-from-behind win that dealt a shocking blow to Tanduay Light’s quarterfinal aspirations.

“I’ve kept telling the players this kind of game help them develop their character and confidence. I thought they responded well even when things are not going our way,” said Bread Story-Lyceum coach Bonnie Tan.

“Being a newcomer in the league, we’re happy with what we have accomplished but we’re not done yet,” he added.

Bread Story-Lyceum finished the eliminations in a tie with Tanduay Light at 5-6 record. But the Pirates clinched the last quarterfinal berth on the strength of the winner over the other rule. They defeated the Rhum Masters, 69-64, on Nov. 13.

The quarterfinals start on Thursday at the Ynares Arena in Pasig City with third-seed Café France facing no. 6 Bread Story-Lyceum at 2 p.m. and fourth-seed Jumbo Plastic taking on Cebuana Lhuillier at 4 p.m.

Café France and Jumbo Plastic enjoy a twice-to-beat advantage.

Giovanni Jalalon finished with 20 points. Angelo Gabayni added 14 and 15 rebounds while Louie Vigil contributed 12 for the Pirates, who shut down the Alibaba in the last 68 seconds.

It was a tough loss for the Racal Motors, which had a lot of opportunities to win the game but missed crucial free throws down the stretch. The Alibaba went 4 of 8 from the line in the last two minutes.

Jeff Viernes led all scorers with 23 points. Mark Romero had 13 but missed two foul shots down the stretch with Racal up 90-87.

Keith Agovida added 12 and Michael DiGregorio and Raymond Jamito chipped in 11 apiece for the Alibaba, who committed 21 turnovers that netted Bread Story-Lyceum 24 points.

In the second game, Cagayan Valley routed Wangs Basketball, 104-66, to complete a sweep of the eliminations.

Jason Melano scored 23 points, Abel Galliguez had 12 and Don Trollano added 11 for the Rising Suns, who went through 11 games in the eliminations without a loss.

Angelo Montuano finished with 14 points for the Couriers, who finished the elims with a 2-9 mark.