The Batangas City Athletics - Tanduay leaned on a raucous home crowd at the Batangas State University Gym on Wednesday to dismiss a gritty Gensan Warriors Burlington side, 85-79, in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Season.
Moncrief Rogado's 14 points led Rum City but Prince Rivero copped the best player of the game award with a sterling 13-point, 11-rebound night.
"Inulit-ulit ng mga coaches na pag close game it will come down to our character. They formed us well for that," said Rivero afterwards.
Batangas rises to 12-5 in the standings with the win while Gensan drops to 13-6.
Batangas took the first quarter while the visitors responded well in the second to take a 41-34 lead at the half.
Buoyed by the jam-packed arena the Batanguenos pulled to within 62-60 at the end of the third due to the efforts of Jason Melano and Rogado.
In the final canto Rum City reeled off an 8-0 run with baskets from Dan Sara, Rivero, Med Salim and Melano to find themselves up 78-74 with three minutes left.
But a Pamboy Raymundo lay-up, two of eight that he scored in the final quarter, plus a Marlon Basco triple pulled Gensan to within one, 80-79 with 22 seconds to go.
Rogado split from the line for Batangas then got fouled as he grabbed the rebound on the second attempt. He made both of the ensuing pair of charities to ice the game.
Even in defeat, Raymundo was outstanding with 21 points and 10 assists.
In the second game of the day, Makati Super Crunch steamrolled the Mindoro Tamaraws, 97-65, to improve to 14-3.
Super Crunch got 19 points from Juneric Baloria, 15 of which were in a hellacious 37-point first quarter for Makati.
The lead was 57-41 at the half but in the third quarter Makati went for the jugular, unspooling a 12-0 run bookended by triples from Josh Torralba for a 69-41 lead. The Tams could only muster six points in the period as Makati went ahead 86-47.
Mark Niel Cruz dropped four straight baskets for Makati as Super Crunch cruised to victory. Cruz finished with 18 points while Torralba has 13.
Mindoro's offense was centered on Mark Doligon and Rodel Vaygan who collected 25 and 19 points respectively. No one else in the Mindoro roster hit double figures in scoring as the club slides to 6-12.
In the afternoon game the misery continued for the SOCCSKSARGEN Marlins Armor On as Bataan Risers - Camaya Coast dealt them a 17th loss in as many games via a 102-71 scoreline.
Byron Villarias was on point for Bataan, winding up with 24 points.
The Risers showed their intent early taking a 27-14 lead at the first quarter, with Villarias accounting for 11 of those points and Reed Juntilla with eight.
Both teams were in an offensive rhythm in the second period as the half ended with Bataan on top 57-45. The third quarter ended with an 8-0 Bataan spurt for a 77-57 lead.
Juntilla and James Castro combined for a similar 8-0 run to begin the fourth quarter, ending any hopes of an Armor On fightback. Bataan goes to 10-8 with the win.
The Marlins were led in scoring by Exe Biteng's 20 points.