Muntinlupa books a semis ticket; Paranaque forces rubbermatch
ABS-CBN Sports on Mar 28, 2018 05:56 PM
Muntinlupa punched a Final Four ticket after completing a quarterfinals series sweep of Navotas.
Muntinlupa turned to Allan Mangahas in the last 41 seconds to bury the dagger straight into the heart of Navotas as the Cagers clinched a Final Four spot with a 72-69 win in Game 2 of their best-of-three 2018 Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Anta Rajah Cup quarterfinals Tuesday night.
Protecting a slim lead with under a minute remaining, Mangahas scored on a layup to give the host team a five-point margin. Jamil Gabawan answered with a basket in the next play to cut Navotas’ deficit to 72-69 with only 37 seconds remaining.
Cagers forward Chito Jaime missed his three-point attempt but Chester Saldua missed on a potential equalizer from beyond the arc for the Clutch as time expired to the delight of the home crowd inside the Muntinlupa Sports Complex.
Mangahas finished with 23 points, six rebounds and six assists while Dave Morale and Chito Jaime scored 14 and 12 markers, respectively, for the home team, which will face in the best-of-three semis the survivor between Bulacan and Paranaque in the other quarters pairing.
JP Calvo put Navotas on top, 67-64, on a triple with 3:50 left. Moralde scored on a layup before Felix Apreku gave Muntinlupa the lead on two charities followed by a basket by Mangahas as the Cagers took a 72-67 advantage with 1:16 remaining.
JP Calvo had 20 points while Jamil Gabawan posted 20 markers and 17 rebounds for Muntinlupa.
Meanwhile, Paranaque forced a rubbermatch for a spot in the semis after blowing out Bulacan, 81-54.
The Patriots limited the Kuyas to only 27 points in the first half to dictate the tempo of match before cruising to a rout that evened the series, 1-1.
Juneric Baloria led the way for Paranaque with 26 points while Harold Arboleda had 12 markers and 13 boards.
Jorey Napoles and Stephen Siruma fired 12 points each for Bulacan.
The rubbermatch is set on April 3 at KB Gym in Malolos, Bulacan.
Valenzuela and Quezon City will cross paths at 7:00 p.m. for the right to face Batangas in the semis to be followed by the Paranaque-Bulacan sudden death at 9:00 p.m.