BACOOR wasted a big lead and settled for a 91-86 victory over Bacolod in the OKBet-MPBL (Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League) Fifth Season on Monday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.
Way ahead, 74-50, late in the third quarter, the Strikers got complacent and allowed the Bacolodnons to threaten at 86-88 following a 19-5 run capped by a Ryusei Koga triple with 1 minute and 18 seconds left.
Bacolod couldn’t score after that, however, and Bacoor sealed its 18th win against four losses with split charities by Aaron Jeruta and two free throws by James Kwekuteye.
Veteran Chito Jaime finished with 15 points, 12 in the third quarter, to earn best player honors for Bacoor, which also drew 11 points each from Michael Canete and Kwekuteye.
Bacolod, which tumbled to 9-14, got 22 points plus 9 rebounds from Mark Sarangay, 14 from John Cantimbuhan, 12 from Koga and 10 from homegrown Alfred Sedillo.
Rizal Xentromall also gained traction with a 77-71 triumph over Sarangani in the nightcap of another elimination round triple bill of the 29-team tournament.
The Golden Coolers leaned on Jeric James Pido to and Alvin John Capobres to fend off the Marlins and remain in playoff contention with an 11-13 slate.
Pido fired five of his 15 points in the last 2 minutes and 9 seconds, including the insurance charities with 18 seconds left, and added 9 rebounds and 4 assists as Rizal pulled down Sarangani to 9-14.
Capobres, whose basket cooled Sarangani’s rally, 74-69, ended up with 14 points, followed by Troy Mallillin with 12 points plus 9 rebounds.
Darangani got 21 points plus rebounds from Roland Are and 11 points plus 6 assists from Jeff Comia.
The Marikina Shoemasters battered the Bicol Volcanoes, 100-59, in the opener to sustain their rise in the standings.
With its sixth straight win, Marikina climbed to 13-10 and handed cellar-dweller Bicol its 22nd loss against only one win.
Lanky Jason Strait led Marikina with 16 points plus 8 rebounds, followed by Marwin Dionisio with 14 points plus 6 rebounds, Felipe Chavez with 13 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists and homegrown Silas Zabale and Raymond Casajeros with 10 points each.
The MPBL visits the Nueva Ecija Coliseum in Palayan City with Bataan tackling Laguna at 4 p.m., Quezon Province battling Valenzuela at 6 p.m., and Pasig testing Nueva Ecija at 8 p.m.