Balanga finally reigns supreme in Chooks 3x3 Magiting Cup
ABS-CBN Sports on Sep 20, 2019 05:13 PM
(Photo courtesy of Chooks Pilipinas 3x3)
Wilkins Balanga finally nabbed the elusive championship, ruling the 2019 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas 3x3 Magiting Cup presented by Coca-Cola after taking down archrivals Equalivet Pasig, 21-19 (9:17), Friday at SM Megamall Events Center in Mandaluyong.
"Sobrang sarap kasi all throughout this season, Pasig talaga yung kalaban namin. Yun nga, nakaisa kami, naka-tsamba kami," said Alvin Pasaol as Balanga ended up as runner-up in both the President's and Patriot's Cups.
Though he might think that it was luck, the determination of Pasaol is what lifted Balanga to the very top in this tournament sanctioned by the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and endorsed by FIBA 3x3.
With 1:43 left and Balanga clinging to a 20-19 lead, the burly 6-foot-4 forward brushed off Joshua Munzon's sticky defense, knocking down an undergo stab for the million-peso bucket.
Pasaol had 12 points in the finale.
Besides bringing home PhP 1M, the Pure also punched their ticket to the 2019 Jeju Challenger which takes place on October 5 and 6.
Dehesa and Santi Santillan added five and four markers, respectively, for Balanga whcih only lost once in 18 games this conference.
"We gained a lot of experience abroad and it translated to finally winning this one today," said Dehesa.
Ababou paced Pasig with 10 points as Joshua Munzon was limited to just two markers.
The Kings, who are set to fly out to Kaohsiung on Saturday for a Challenger tournament, were rewarded with PhP 500, 000 for finishing second. Fyr Fyter Bacolod, who finished in third-place, brought home PhP 250, 000.
Balanga advanced to the Million Peso Game thanks to a Santillan game-winner over Phenom-Basilan, 21-18 (8:16). On the other hand, Munzon knocked down a winner of his own with just 20 seconds left in the game to complete Pasig's escape of Bacolod, 21-19, in the other semis bracket.
In the Chooks-to-Go Harissa Roast side events, David Carlos completed a sweep of the dunk contest while Bacolod's Adrian Celada won the two-point shootout.