July 30, 2018

Che'Lu Bar and Grill has sights on finals as semi-final duel with CEU gets going

Last conference's runner-up Che'Lu Bar and Grill has its sights in the championship when it begins its best-of-three series against Centro Escolar University Tuesday in the 2018 PBA D-League Foundation Cup semifinals at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.

Topping the eliminations with their 8-2 card, the Revellers are coming in confident for the 4 p.m. game against the Scorpions.

But coach Stevenson Tiu knows that in the playoffs, everything is fair game.

"For any other coaches, happy ako na were on top. Pero pagdating sa semis back to zero na yan," he said. "Walang pushover na teams. Ang mindset lang namin is to beat any team na makaharap namin, and ngayon, CEU yun."

Jeff Viernes seeks to continue his stupendous play for the veteran-laden Che'Lu side, together with Levi Hernandez, Jay-R Taganas, and Jessie Collado.

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The two teams split their elimination meeting, with CEU taking their first round matchup, 94-78 back in June 7, before Che'Lu avenging that loss with a 105-80 hammering last July 5.

Scorpions acting coach Derrick Pumaren, though, acknowledges that odds are stacked against them in this tiff.

"Nobody expected us to be here. With the departure of Rod Ebondo and other veteran big men we had, we are the surprise team in the semis," he said as his crew made it after finishing with an even 5-5 record, good for fourth. "So it's going to be a tall order for us playing the number one team in the league."

"We just have to compete and play discipline basketball for us to pull a surprise. We know what they can do so we have to show up Tuesday with our A game to be able to advance to the next round."

It's Easier said than done. But if Orlan Wamar, Pierce Chan, Rich Guinitaran and Gilles Oloume play consistent CEU might have a chance.

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