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June 19, 2019

Inspired Scorpions go for 2-1 lead

The undermanned Scorpions shock many observers Tuesday by humbling powerhouse Cignal-AtenoBlue, 77-74, to even the best-of-five series many though would be swept by the Blue Eagles.

Now the Scorpions have the opportunity to take the lead, something that looked impossible to achieve by a team of only seven players.

But CEU coach Derrick Pumaren is keeping his faith, stressing that for as long as his troops stay focused and determined anything can happen in the 4 p.m. encounter.

He, however, warned his team to be ready for a tough grind.

"I'm sure that Ateneo will be back more aggressive for Game Three," Pumaren said. "They want to jump on us so we just have to be ready for them."

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Jerome Santos, Rich Guinitaran and Maodo Malick Diouf carried the fight for CEU in Game Two but will need a lot of help in Game 3 if the Scorpions intend to pull off another surprise.

Blue Eagles deputy coach Sandy Arespacochaga, admitted that the Scorpions had a better game plan in Game 2.

"CEU played great, and we didn't come to play. There were a lot of lapses on our part, and a lot of great plays from CEU," he said.

"But the key for us is learning from the game and coming to Thursday with proper adjustments. We're looking to bounce back from this game."

Forward Isaac Go missed last game and remains a game time decision for Cignal-Ateneo.

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Meanwhile the Best Player of the Conference award will be held before Game Three, Cignal-Ateneo's Thirdy Ravena and Valencia City Bukidnon-SSCR's RK Ilagan and Allyn Bulanadi are contesting the award.