Malacañang-PSC Kamao now leads Group B of UNTV Cup Season 8 after another come-from-behind victory versus NHA Builders in the main game of Sunday’s triple-header, 77-76.
Although the NHA Builders have piled up a huge lead over the Malacañang-PSC Kamao in the first half, with tight defense and effective scoring, Kamao took the lead of the game at the end of the third period when Joseph Roque sank his buzzer beater 3-point shot.
In the final period, the duel between the Builders and Kamao was toe-to-toe.
The game tied twice before Malacañang-PSC darted ahead with five points in the last 52 seconds of the game, 76-71.
NHA was able to come close by a point in the final 34 seconds, 77-76, after a 2-point field goal from Waldemar Tibay and three free throws from Alvin Vitug.
Thereafter, Kamao had a chance to pull away but Visnu Das Javier missed his 3-point shot. With 20 seconds left in the game, the NHA Builders had the opportunity to win the game by a shot, but the tough defense of Malacañang-PSC distracted NHA.
Hailed as Best Players of the Game, Eric Dela Cuesta yielded 19 points while rookie Joseph Roque scored 18 points.
Supporting cast Visnu Das Javier produced 12 points while Ian Garrido contributed 11 points.
Malacañang-PSC Kamao head coach Raffy Gonzalez said, “Gusto lang talaga manalo ng players ko. Nag-struggle lang kami talaga noong first half, so sinabi ko sa kanila: ‘Ilaro lang yung dapat ilaro.’ Dumipensa kami nang maayos.”
(My players just wanted to win the game. We struggled in the first half, so I told them: ‘Do what you have to do.’ We defended the goal properly.)
For NHA, Alvin Vitug scored 34 points ang grabbed 12 rebounds while Marvin Mercado gained 14 points and 13 rebounds.
NHA Builders head coach Bennet Palad admitted, “Malacañang played a good game. May mga lapses kami lalo na sa end game pero madali namn yun i-correct sa practice, so babawi na lang. Maganda naman inilaro nila.”
(Malacañang-PSC played a good game. We had lapses specially in the end game but we can correct it in our practice game, so we will just bounce back. My players played well.)
Meanwhile, PITC Global Traders defeated PhilHealth Plus in the second game, 95-74 while Judiciary Magis triumphed over GSIS Furies in the first game, 88-72. – Bernard Dadis
Judiciary 88 – C. Tolomia 24, F. Salamat 19, E. Dionisio 17, E. Dela Cruz 13, H. Bergonio 7, R. Malinao 5, C. Roma 2, V. Puno 1
GSIS 74 – R. Banzali 29, C. Gonzalez 10, R. Laurel 10, N. Cacatian 9, K. Ilano 7, T. Gementera 4, P. Dela Cuadra 2, M. Nuyana 2, T. Hernandez 1
Quarter Scores: 27-13, 46-36, 60-52, 88-74
PITC 95 – H. Porto 22, L. Lopez 22, M. Martin 13, R. Vasallo 10, R. Regalado 9, M. Juan 8, A. Taplah 5, R. Daquioag 2, R. Barbers 2, M. Gecale 2
PhilHealth 74 – J. Aldave 20, K. Emata 11, R. Armojallas 10, E. Malana 10, E. Pacheco 9, J. Hierro 4
Quarter Scores: 20-12, 42-34, 67-52, 95-74
Malacañang-PSC 77 – E. Dela Cuesta 19, J. Roque 18, V. Javier 12, I. Garrido 11, J. Jimenez 4, N. Javier 3, J. Punzalan 3, R. Abalos 1
NHA 76 – A. Vitug 34, M. Mercado 14, J. Dizon 9, A. Lustestica 9, J. Alastoy 4, W. Tibay 2, A. Palad 2, J. Forbes 1, R. Tibay 1