MPBL: Manila shakes off slow start to beat Paranaque
ABS-CBN Sports on Nov 07, 2018 03:19 PM
Manila closed in on league-leading Bataan with its fourth win in a row
Manila and Bacoor repulsed their respective rivals last Tuesday to boost their bids in the 2018 Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball league Datu Cup at the Valenzuela Astrodome.
The Stars bucked a slow start before pouring it on late in the second half to beat the Parañaque Patriots, 98-88.
Guards Chris Bitoon and Kyles Lao provided the firepower and semblance in the backcourt for the Stars, who now improved their win-loss record to 11-2 after picking up their fourth straight win.
The team also fortified its hold of the solo second spot in the tough northern division of this tournament.
Bitoon, the spitfire player from St. Clare, led the way with 22 points, nine of them happened in the fourth period.
But it was Lao who stepped up big anew for the Stars as the third string guard came off the bench and contributed 14 markers for the Philip Cezar-mentored team, which moved just half a game behind tournament leader Bataan Risers in the team standings.
Bacoor had a more challenging way pulling off a win over home team Valenzuela as the Strikers needed scrappy Leo De Vera and new recruit Samboy de Leon in closing out their rivals, 88-81.
De Vera came away with a double-double performance, finishing with 11 points and 17 rebounds. His jumper in the last 1:13 that gave the Strikers an 85-81 lead while De Leon, a prized pick up from San Juan via the free agency, hit two free throws in the final 18 seconds to seal the win for Bacoor.
Bacoor now moved up to the team standings after picking up its eighth win in 13 games. Valenzuela fell to 4-9 card.