MPBL

Makati stuns Pampanga

August 5, 2023 People's Tonight 319 views

MAKATI stunned Pampanga, 102-97, in overtime, while Caloocan rallied to nip Muntinlupa, 81-80, in the OKBet-MPBL (Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League) Fifth Season at the Muntinlupa Sports Complex.

Keith Agovida bunched six points in Makati OKBet’s 10-point wind up in the extension period to hand the Kings their 16th win against six losses in the round-robin elimination phase of the 29-team tournament.

Paul Sanga, on the other hand, scored on a drive with 14 seconds left to complete Caloocan’s fightback from 13 points down in the fourth quarter and climb to 16-7.

Reliving his reputation as an explosive scorer, Agovida, the former NCAA Juniors Rookie of the Year who once scored a record 82 points for the Jose Rizal University Light Bombers, wound up with 21 points and 7 rebounds to complement Emman Calo’s 31-point, 5-rebound effort and Rob Celiz’s 20-point, 14-rebound, 4-assist output.

Agovida also forged the extension at 87-87 following a clutch triple with 53 seconds to go.

Pampanga, which absorbed only its second loss in 22 starts, was still ahead, 97-92, with 1 minute and 49 seconds left behind Justine Baltazar’s inside forays, but went silent the rest of the way.

Baltazar registered his 21st-straight double-double with 31 points and 18 rebounds to go with 8 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks, but fellow offensive marvel Encho Serrano was held to 13 points, aside from missing two crucial free throws in the homestretch.

Trailing, 67-75, Batang Kankaloo unloaded 13 points behind Gabby Espinas and Irven Palencia against a lone triple by Val Acuna to knot the count at 78.

Ian Melencio canned two charities to restore Muntinlupa’s lead, but Palencia was able to split his two free throws before Sanga delivered the lethal basket and push Caloocan to 16-7.

Espinas emerged Caloocan’s top performer with 13 points and 9 rebounds, while Acuna was the lone double-digit scorer for Muntinlupa, which fell to 12-9, with 16.

GenSan dumped Valenzuela, 109-86, and improved to 17-5 behind Kyt Jimenez’s triple-double and the sniping of Mark Cruz and John Wilson.

Jimenez posted 10 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists to complement Cruz’s 26 points, highlighted by 6 triples, and Wilson’s 23 points, laced with 6 triples.

Valenzuela fell to 3-19 despite AJ Benson’s 28-point, 6-rebound, 4-assist effort.

The MPBL returns to the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan with a triple bill pitting Quezon City against Iloilo at 4 p.m., Negros against Pasay at 6 p.m., and Zamboanga against San Juan at 8 p.m.

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