MPBL: Batangas rallies from 18 points down to stun San Juan

Bob Guerrero on Oct 08, 2019 09:12 AM
 MPBL: Batangas comes from 18 points down to stun San Juan
"Medyo mixed emotions pa kami pero maaking pasasalamat sa mga bago." - Moncreif Rogado of Batangas City Athletics - Tanduay (photo courtesy of MPBL)

The Batangas City Athletics - Tanduay overturned an 18-point first half deficit to defeat the San Juan Knights Go For Gold 93-88 in the featured game of Monday night's sked of the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Season.

Moncrief Rogado sparkled for Rum City, who christen their new home, the Batangas State University Gym, with a win against the defending champs. It's only the second setback for San Juan all season.

When asked about the transfer window trading of players, Rogado candidly said "medyo mixed emotions pa kami pero maaking pasasalamat sa mga bago." Rogado led his team with 18 points, two more than new signing Dan Sara.

The Athletics outsteadied their visitors in the endgame to go to improve to 11-5. San Juan slips to 15-2.

San Juan were in rhythm from the start and with John Wilson in form the Knights led in the first quarter 33-20. With three and a half minutes to go in the second quarter and up 48-38, San Juan's Lester Reyes tagged Athletic Prince Rivero in the jaw with an elbow. The move did not escape the attention of the refs and after a review, Reyes was thrown out of the game. At the half the visitors lead 58-47.

In the third quarter Rum City's Genmar Bragais cut the lead to 72-69 before Rum City's Jeff Viernes badly injured his ankle when he landed on an opponent's foot while contesting a rebound. Viernes' substitute Sara trimmed the lead to just 1, 73-72 with a triple, but at the start of the fourth quarter the Knights were back on top 78-72.

A Jason Melano lay-up capped an 8-0 run by Batangas that whittled the lead to just one, 81-80, with six minutes to go.

Down the stretch the Batanguenos played superbly, buoyed by a packed arena of their fans. A 9-0 run ignited by a Sara triple turned a 87-82 deficit into a 91-87 advantage with under a minute to go, which was a good enough cushion for Goldwyn Monteverde's men.

Wilson had a game-high 28 points but his side sputtered in the end with just 10 fourth-quarter points.

In the second game Francis Munsayac provided the heroics as Imus Bandera Khaleb Shawarma pipped the Mindoro Tamaraws 88-86 in a nail-biting finish.

Munsayac knocked in the last-second game winning jumper moments after tying the game with a triple as he finished with 16 points.

The Cavitenos go to 4-12 while Mindoro slides to 6-11.

Jayjay Helterbrand started off the fourth quarter hot with a pair of triples as the Bandera forged a 69-60 advantage with 7:33 to go. Mac Baracael of Mindoro dueled with the likes of Jay-R Ng Sang and Jonas Nacpil down the stretch. Baracael drained a go-ahead triple with 47 seconds left that gave the Tams an 86-83 lead, but on the next possession Munsayac fired in a three-ball of his own from the top of he key to knot the score.

In the last play Munsayac shot with seven seconds left. The attempt missed but the rebound caromed fortuitously straight back at him. He made no mistake with his second bite of the cherry, swishing in for the win, rendering the Mindoro fans, who had made the ferry crossing to watch, speechless.

Baracael's 24 points was all in vain for Mindoro.

In the opening match the Davao Occidental Tigers - Cocolife outclassed the Bulacan Kuyas 91-75.

Mark Yee topscored for the South division powerhouse with 18 points, followed by Marco Balagtas' 15.

Don Dulay's Tigers put the game away in the third period, outscoring their foes 24-10 for an insurmountable 67-46 lead heading into the final period. James Forrester combined with Billy Robles and Balagtas to bury the Kuyas with a furious offensive display.

Rev Diputado's 19 points was tops for the Bulaquenos, who are teetering on the edge of the playoff zone with a 9-7 card. Cocolife, on the other hand, increase their lead atop the South Division at 15-2.

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