BANFF – The ‘chip finals are set in the Banff Canadian-Filipino Basketball League next weekend after Blitzkrieg and Voyager Inn advanced with clutch wins in the semi-finals on Saturday (Aug. 3).
Blitzkrieg’s Kenneth Fontarum hit a three-point dagger in the dying seconds to lift his squad to an 81-76 victory over Team Canmore at Banff Community High School (BHCS) gymnasium.
Blitzkrieg’s Kenneth Fontarum with the 3-point dagger to put his team up by 4 late in the game over Team #Canmore. Blitzkrieg advances to the #Banff Filipino-Canadian Basketball League finals for the 4th straight year. pic.twitter.com/gjABpWQ0xL— Jordan Small (@jordiesmall) August 4, 2019
Not to be outdone under pressure, Voyager Inn’s John Bunao lifted his team to a 75-71 victory after scoring an easy deuce on an inbounds play against defending champs Hunter with 10 seconds left.
Voyageur Inn’s John Bunao with the easy bucket to go up 4 with 10 seconds left. Voyageur Inn advances to the #Banff Filipino-Canadian #Basketball League finals next week against Blitzkrieg. pic.twitter.com/AY8rIyip3W— Jordan Small (@jordiesmall) August 4, 2019
Blitzkrieg and Voyager Inn faceoff in the league championship, Saturday (Aug. 10) at 7 p.m. at BCHS.
Team Canmore and Hunter vie for third place at 5 p.m.
After the first semi-finals game, Fontarum, who scored a game-high 33 points against Team Canmore, said he had the green light to fire away in the matchup, which came up huge in the fading moments.
“From the start of the game I hit two three-pointers, so I was feeling it,” the shooting guard said. “I was thinking, walking down the court, they’re not expecting me to put up a hurried shot, so I knew the defence was not ready for me. I’m always working on the shot, so if they give me a little bit of space I’m going to take it, because I’m feeling it, and I’m glad I made it.”
Blitzkrieg's John Santiago added 16 points and Team Canmore's Arnie Fidel scored a team-high 21 points.
The win marks Blitzkrieg’s fourth straight season heading to the finals.
“We won one and lost two so we’re looking for redemption this season,” said Marc Reyes, the team’s captain and forward. “Our motto is, ‘Never say die.’ We keep on fighting back … We’re going to be preparing for them hard, we’re going to be ready for next week, so it’s going to be fun, we’re excited.”
Bunao might be a shy guy off the court, but on the hardwood, the loud, aggressive scorer led all players with 29 points to help knock off the defending champs.
Bunao put the game on ice with an easy layup on an inbounds play, making it a two-possession game with 10 seconds remaining.
“I’m always training to work on that, so that’s what it is,” Bunao said.
Voyager Inn's Joseph Bunao made five threes and had 19 points.
Voyager Inn’s Sherwin Berdin said the team is excited to face Blitzkrieg next weekend.
“They’re a tough team. They have a lot of good chemistry, but we’re looking forward to winning the game next week, we’re locked in,” Berdin said.