Paolo Javelona and Mac Tallo shoot lights out to leave SOCCSKSARGEN winless.

Bob Guerrero on Sep 22, 2019 11:25 AM
MPBL: Bacolod subdues SOCCSKSARGEN in home debut
"Wala kaming ginawa kundi mag-ensayo para ibigay sa inyo ang panalong ito." - Paolo Javelona (FILE PHOTO)

Bacolod Master Sardines made their first-ever Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Season home game a winning one on Saturday night.

Led by Paolo Javelona and Mac Tallo, the Negrenses turned away a stubborn SOCCSKSARGEN Marlins Armor On 89-80.

The massive crowd at the University of St. La Salle Gymnasium in Bacolod saw their team improve to 6-8 and boost their playoff hopes. "Wala kaming ginawa kundi mag-ensayo para ibigay sa inyo ang panalong ito," said Bacolod native Javelona to the Bacolodnon fans after.

The Marlins looked determined to spoil the party from the start. Norman Gonzales supplied 8 points in the first quarter as the Mindanaoans trailed 22-20 after ten minutes. In the second quarter Armor On unfurled an audacious 11-0 featuring 5 straight points from Exe Biteng to lead the home side 41-34. At the half the Marlins were surprisingly in command, 45-44, with Javelona doing his part to whittle down the lead. But in the third period Bacolod's Tallo exploded with 16 points as the home team finished the quarter with all the momentum and a 74-64 lead.

Bacolod put the game out of reach with an 8-2 run early in the fourth spurred by another 6 points by Javelona. SOCCSKSARGEN tried to keep up but Jopher Custodio's triple with 2:30 to go gave Master Sardines an 85-74 lead that they would not relinquish.

Javelona led all scorers with 27 points, with Tallo not far behind at 22. But coach Vic Ycasiano's unsung hero was new backcourt acquisition Jeric Cañada, who scored 5 points and dished out 11 dime

The Marlins lose for the fourteenth time in fourteen tries despite Gonzales' 23 points.


Davao Occidental 76 - 71 Basilan Steel

In the first game of the evening Davao Occidental Tigers - Cocolife benefited from a swarming defense and yet another brilliant night from Mark Yee to edge Basilan Steel - Jumbo Plastic 76-71.

Yee produced 22 points and shot an incredible 8 from 11 from the field to lead his team in scoring. On the other end of the court the Tigers' suffocating defense limited Basilan to just 36 percent shooting from the field and only 3/20 from beyond the arc.

Davao led 38-32 at the half then grabbed the game by the throat in the third quarter. Chester Saldua dropped a jumper with a minute to go and the Tigers had a 7-0 run and led 57-43. By the end of the quarter the Steel had trimmed the lead to 59-51.

In the fourth quarter Jumbo Plastic tried to keep pace with Irven Palencia finding some rhythm. Basilan's Jerald Bautista banked in a layup with 3 minutes left to pull the Steel to within 6, 70-64. But then Marco Balagtas rifled in a triple for a 73-64 lead that proved to be the dagger for DavOcc.

The Tigers improve to 13-2 and tighten their stranglehold on the top spot in the South Division. Basilan are at 9-6 and still well positioned for a playoff spot.

Coach Jerson Cabiltes' team was led by Bautista's 18 points.

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