Parañaque and Valenzuela snatched their second victories in contrasting fashion Thursday night in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Anta Rajah Cup at Valenzuela Astrodome.
Home team Valenzuela mercilessly pummeled the listless Bataan Defenders in a 97-80 blowout, while the Patriots held on in the closing seconds against the Bulacan Kuyas to win 74-72.
Energized by their home crowd at the packed arena, the Classic torched the Defenders early and blew the game wide open with a 30-point lead, 52-22, at halftime in a 20-minute scoring barrage capped by Rocky Acidre’s cold-blooded triple at the buzzer.
The Classic walked away with a 2-1 win-loss record tied with the Patriots and idle Muntinlupa.
Acidre finished with 15 points, Adrian Celada had 12, Mark Andaya had 11 while Jeff Javillonar posted 10. Skipper Paolo Hubalde registered a double-double with 10 points and 14 assists for Valenzuela.
David had 20 points in a losing effort for Bataan, which absorbed its third loss in as many outings and tied with Caloocan.
Meanwhile, Parañaque banked on Juneric Baloria’s layup and split charities inside the last 1:50 to break a 70-all score before holding on in the last 25 seconds to hand the Kuyas their second straight loss in three games.
Baloria gave the Patriots a 73-70 lead with 45 second left in the game on a split at the foul line. Jovit Dela Cruz sank a basket with 25 seconds remaining to close the gap for Bulacan, 73-72, but Parañaque got the breaks of the game in the ensuing play before Jonathan Belorio nailed a split free throw for the final score.
Jemal Vizcarra had 15 points, Ryusei Koga got 13 while Baloria finished with 12 for the Patriots.
Marlon Monte and Hernal Escosio paced Bulacan with 13 and 10 points, respectively.
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