Wilson waxes hot in San Juan's back-to-back wins to begin MPBL
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jun 28, 2019 10:49 PM
San Juan banked on total team effort to rise to 2-0 in its title defense
San Juan now has back-to-back wins to commence its quest for back-to-back championships in the MPBL Lakan Cup.
The Knights blasted off to a 26-5 start that eventually ended as a 74-72 triumph over Pasay, Friday right at home at Filoil Flying V Centre.
John Wilson was on-point right from tip-off, scoring all but two of his eight points in the opening salvo.
Behind their hotshot guard, the defending champions charged to a 21-point lead early in the second quarter.
Still, the Voyagers kept coming and even snared away the lead, 69-66, with three minutes remaining.
It was at that point, however, that San Juan re-established and reinforced its defense and only allowed their opponents three points the rest of the way.
At the other end, CJ Isit dropped four of his 10 points, including the go-ahead layup, to go along with four steals, three assists, and two rebounds while backcourt-mate Andoy Estrella also added a total of 13 markers in the Knights' second straight win to start the season.
Veteran big man Larry Rodriguez posted a 10-point, 10-rebound double-double to help his team hold off Pasay's furious fightback.
That furious fightback was fueled by Dhon Reverente who pounded in 26 points, 16 rebounds, and four steals as well as Jan Jamon who poured in 12 markers of his own.
Reverente was held scoreless in the final frame, however, as the Voyagers sank for the first time in three tries.
Meanwhile, Makati stayed spotless after two games after sending Bacolod crashing back to earth, 84-74.
Rudy Lingganay showed the way for the SuperCrunch with 20 points and seven rebounds while Jeckster Apinan posted a 13-marker, 15-board double-double.
Cedric Ablaza also provided a big boost off the bench with 14 points, eight rebounds, five blocks, and three assists while Kib Montalbo, facing off with his hometown team, chimed in six markers, an assist, a steal, and a board.
For Bacolod, Jopher Custodio and Pao Javelona fronted the effort with 23 and 21 points, respectively. Mac Tallo, after a 31-point outburst in his league debut, was slowed down to just 11 markers, nine rebounds, nine assists, and two steals in this one to see his team suffer its first setback following a season-opening win.
In the day's other game, Iloilo picked up its maiden win in just its first try coming at the expense of Paranaque, 67-64.
RR De Leon topped the scoring column with 18 points, but it was Richard Escoto who banked in the buzzer-beating triple that proved to be the game-winner.
That was Escoto's most important contributions among his total of 11 points, five rebounds, and four assists.
Jamel Vizcarra spearheaded the offensive for the Patriots with 12 points. Unable to stop Escoto in the endgame, however, they dropped to 1-1 in the standings.