Eze keeps Perpetual's playoff flame flickering

ABS-CBN Sports on Mar 19, 2018 05:05 PM
Eze keeps Perpetual's playoff flame flickering
Prince Eze kept Perpetual in playoff contention

University of Perpetual Help stayed alive in the 2018 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup while also eliminating AMA Online Education in the process with an 89-81 win on Monday at the JCSGO Gym in Quezon City.

Nigerian big man Prince Eze captained the Altas with 22 points, 20 rebounds, and four blocks as they halted their three-game losing slide.

Rey Anthony Peralta poured 12 of his 17 markers in the telling third quarter, as Perpetual jumped on AMA after the halftime break and built a lead as high as 25, 69-44.

John Rey Villanueva also drilled 13 points powered by three triples while Edgar Charcos wound up with 13 markers, eight assists, and six rebounds.

It almost looked like an easy win for the Altas after building a sizable lead in the third frame, but James Martinez put AMA on his back and got the Titans within five, 79-84, with 1:57 remaining.

Luckily for Perpetual, Villanueva connected with an open three before Eze glided for the easy layup to stave off the uprising and clinch the victory.

“Nag-relax eh tsaka nag-iisip ng puntos yung mga players. So we just have to be unselfish pagdating sa ganoon and just try to get the win instead,” said coach Frankie Lim.

At 3-5, the Altas still have a remote chance to make a late run to the top six if they sweep their remaining games.

For Lim, that’s exactly what he needs as he eyes to continue building his wards in preparation for the collegiate season. “We'll try to come up with a game plan for our next few games and hope we make it. It’s good for the team,” he said.

Robbie Manalang paced AMA with 23 points, four rebounds, and four assists while Martinez unfurled 18 markers, 13 coming from the fourth quarter.

The Titans join Batangas-EAC and JRU at the bottom of the standings at 1-7.

BOX SCORES

PERPETUAL 89 — Eze 22, Peralta 17, Charcos 13, Villanueva 13, Precillas 10, Coronel 8, Tiburcio 3, Salvador 2, Mangalino 1, Antonio 0, Aurin 0, Pido 0, Tamayo 0.

AMA ONLINE EDUCATION 81 — Manalang 23, Martinez 18, Lao 15, Antonares 10, C. Escalambre 9, Quijano 3, Taganas 2, J. Escalambre 1, Garcia 0, Velasquez 0.

QUARTER SCORES: 22-18, 41-36, 70-51, 89-81.

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