Published on July 7th, 2014 | by John Lyons0
Eagles swoop at the death to deny Alemán
Holders Boston College survived a major scare against Alemán Concepción in their opening Libcentro basketball play-off match at the weekend.
The Eagles needed a Jorge Valencia shot on the buzzer to edge out the home side 67-66. Boston were indebted to Valencia who weighed in with 21 points.
Boston could have expected an easier match. They won Zone C in the regular season with a 6-2 record, while Alemán Concepcíon finished fourth in Zone D with 2-6.
In the eight opening rubbers at the weekend, the lower ranked team had home advantage – and three of them made it count.
Perhaps the biggest surprise came with Árabe Valparaíso defeating Municipal Quilicura 69-64. Jhonathan Irribarra scored 20 points as the team that finished fourth in Zone A defeated the Zone B winners.
Universidad Católica beat Valparaíso´s Sportiva Italiana 97-83 to boost their chances of reaching the quarter-finals. Badir Zara weighed in with 20 points and 11 rebounds at Club Palestino.
Español Talca produced an excellent display to beat Municipal Puente Alto 98-77. Vicente Guaico led the way with 19 points.
In addition to Boston College, four other higher-ranked teams put one foot in the last eight by winning away from home.
It was no great surprise that Colegio Los Leones and Universidad de Concepción were two of them as both had finished the regular season with perfect records.
Colegio Los Leones thrashed Sergio Ceppi 117-64, while U de Conce were comfortable 95-57 victors at Brisas.
Liga Nacional Movistar champions Tinguiririca San Fernando eased to a 68-47 victory at Stadio Italiano, while Colo Colo triumphed 86-70 against Arturo Prat in San Felipe. Franco Morales notched 27 points.
The action switches to the home of the higher ranked teams this weekend. There will be two matches (on Saturday and Sunday), if necessary.
The eight winners of the best-of-three ties go through to the quarter-finals, which will also be over three games.