Alab Pilipinas get even with Saigon, get back to winning

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Mar 03, 2017 10:32 PM
Alab Pilipinas get even with Saigon, get back to winning
ABOUT TIME. Contributions from Val Acuna, Sampson Carter, and Lawrence Domingo were much-needed for Alab Pilipinas as Ray Parks Jr. continued to misfire.

Ray Parks Jr. has yet to get back his shooting stroke and Alab Pilipinas have found themselves in an untimely slump in the 2016-2017 Asean Basketball League.

Parks Jr. kept misfiring on Friday, but the rest of the Filipinos stepped up when they travelled to the hostile CIS Arena in Vietnam to stop surging Saigon and silence their screaming supporters.

Val Acuna turned in his best game of the tournament while Sampson Carter still delivered the goods as the Filipinos fought off the very game Heat, 74-70, to return to the win column.

The Filipino-American only had four points, but Acuna and Carter did more than pick up the slack by scoring 23 and 19 points, respectively, to help their team improve to 9-6. The much-needed win keeps them entrenched at third-place – still breathing down the necks of 11-5 Singapore and 11-2 Hong Kong.

Prior to their much-needed win, the Philippines had dropped three of its last five. And during that stretch, Parks Jr. has only averaged 14.6 points.

Alab seemed to have moved forward from their struggles and mounted an advantage of as much as 12 points in the first half.

Still, Saigon proved to be a tough out and pulled to within 65-66 inside the last four minutes. Acuna had the answer for the Filipinos, however, and buried a triple right in the next possession to re-establish a four-point lead.

That margin would hold until the final buzzer.

While Parks Jr. didn’t score much, he made his mark elsewhere with seven rebounds and five assists. Lawrence Domingo chimed in 11 points and nine rebounds as the Filipinos put an end to their two-game slide while also evening their season series with the Heat at 2-2.

Lenny Daniel posted a 22-point, 20-rebound double-double for Saigon which fell back to 5-9.

BOX SCORES

ALAB PILIPINAS 74 – Acuna 23, Carter 19, Domingo 11, Celiz 7, Hughes 4, Parks Jr. 4, Cawaling 4, Fortuna 2, Hubalde 0

SAIGON HEAT 70 – Daniel 22, Morgan 14, Arnold 12, Nguyen T 10, Henriquez 9, Nguyen H 3, Nguyen V

QUARTER SCORES: 19-12, 38-31, 59-52, 74-70

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