Gab Banal's monster evening helped ensure the Bacoor fans went home happy with a win over visiting Bacolod

Bob Guerrero on Aug 14, 2019 09:07 AM
MPBL: Clutch Banal leads Bacoor to OT win over Bacolod
Gab Banal scored eight of his 29 points in overtime as Bacoor escape with the victory over Bacolod in the MPBL Lakan Season (Photo by Richard Esguerra).

Gab Banal proved his MVP-caliber mettle on Tuesday night when the Bacoor Strikers overcame a stubborn Bacolod Master's Sardines, 107-100, in overtime at the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Season.

A turn away crowd at the STRIKE Gymnasium were lucky to see their hometown team win one for the ages as Banal delivered massive baskets down the stretch to help secure the win that brings their record to 8-2. The Negrenses stumble to 3-7.

There was all sorts of drama in the endgame. Bacolod sent the game to overtime and silenced the home crowd with Jopher Custodio's step-back triple off the glass with six seconds left in regulation for 88-88.

But in the extension the Strikers prevailed with four triples including back-to-back from Banal, who sizzled with eight straight points in the extension and 29 overall.

It was a remarkable see-saw battle which saw Bacolod lead 39-33 at the half thanks to big nights from Custodio, (23 points), and Paolo Javelona, (27 points.)

Then Bacoor presented the home crowd with a staggering 39 points in the third, including eight triples, many from Mark Pangilinan who hit six in the game. Bacolod then uncorked a big 24-point fourth quarter to force overtime but they fell just short in OT.

In the second game, the QC Capitals WEMSAP coasted to a 105-93 victory over Imus Bandera Khaleb Shawarma GLC Trucks and Equipment.

The Capitals also had a huge 37-point third quarter that gave them an ample 84-66 cushion to allow them to trade baskets in the final period. QC enjoyed double-figure production from four of their starters, with Zags Gonzaga leading the crew with 19 points.

The Bandera were led in scoring by Jay-ar Ng Sang with 14 points. Right behind him was none other than actor Gerald Anderson, who pumped in 13 points, including two triples and a pair of dishes.

Imus missed the services of Jayjay Helterbrand, who was unavailable. They tumble to 2-6 while Quezon City advances to 5-4.

The afternoon game was a tasty Southern Tagalog Smackdown that saw Rizal Golden Coolers Xentro Malls overcome a 20-point deficit to stun the Batangas City Athletics Tanduay 78-76.

Rizal big man Mark Benitez served up an otherworldly performance with 27 points including six out of 10 from three-point range to lead the Golden Coolers to their second victory in nine games.

The Rizalians looked dead and buried entering the final quarter down 64-51 and with Jason Melano in form for the Athletics.

However, the Golden Coolers found their rhythm in the fourth, with Benitez knocking in three triples, including one to tie the score at 74-all with two minutes left. With 13 ticks remaining Jayvee Vidal's driving layup gave Rizal the four point cushion. Melano coaxed in a basket to cut the deficit to two but Dennice Villamor's desperation three missed, and Jayvee Gayoso's charges had completed their comeback.

Batangas City goes back to .500 on 3-3 with the loss despite Melano's 21 points.

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