Phuket Phuket Waves are the champions. Photo courtesy of Thailand Basketball League

Phuket captures TBL crown

August 29, 2023 Robert Andaya 799 views

PHUKET Waves crowned themselves as the champions of the Thailand Basketball League.

With Morakinyo Michael Williams and Hernal Escosio providing the offensive muscle all game long, Phuket Waves brought down Ban Bueng Devil Rays, 100-98, in an exciting battle before another wildly-cheering crowd at the National Stadium.

Williams finished with 33 points on 12-of-20 shooting, 16 rebounds and three blocks, while Escosio added 25 points and seven rebounds for the Waves, who finished off the hard-fighting Ban Bueng Devil Rays, 2-0, in their scheduled best-of-three title showdown.

Raymond Edward Miller had another double-double performance with, 17 points, 14 rebounds and six assists while playing coach James Martinez contributed another near triple-double with 14 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds for the Waves.

“Sobrang sarap ng feeling, lalo na first time ko playing as head coach, tapos nag-champion pa. Sobrang proud ako sa achievement ng team namin dahil nagsimula kami as No. 4 nung pumasok sa semifinals at ngayon nga, champion na,” said Martinez, whose team is being supported by Sprinto Shades as the official eyewear; Winzir and MEBL Apparel.

“Lahat talaga sa team namin nag step up, lalo na si Wowie (Escosio) nung nag fouled out si Ray (Miller) . Grabe ang ipinakita nilang puso sa game. Hats off din ako kina Kenyo (Williams), Ray at Wowie tsaka sa mga local players. Pati si coach Ronald Mojica,” added Martinez, who is also best remembered during his playing days with San Beda College and University of the East.

Former PBA player Martinez expressed his gratitude to those who supported his team.

“Gusto kong pasalamatan lahat ng boss namin, si boss Jansen, boss Amp, boss Bird, boss Wp at boss JD, Madam Tine Perez at sir Ric ng Winzir, Pawlo Misolas ng Sprinto Shades, boss Keir ng MEBL Apparel. Pati na sa city ng Phuket para sa inyo ito. At syempre, para sa bayan nating Pilipinas.”

Mvuezolo Joe-Junior led Ban Bueng Devil Rays’ losing effort with 27 points, seven assists and five rebounds.

Jose NouchanThavong added 22 points, nine rebounds, four assists and four steals.

Martinez also received a special award for the Most Assists Made.

Williams took the Most Points Award.

The scores:

Phuket Waves (100) – Williams 33, Escosio 25, Miller 17, Martinez 14, Inmaphan 8, Saeming 3, Saema 0, Jaibunjerd 0.
Ban Bueng Devil Rays (98) – Joe-Junior 27, Thavoong 22, Thitikhunrat 16, Rongruang 13, Kularptip 7, Wongdee 6, Watngam 3, Poungmala 2, Tantiwong 2.
Quarterscores: 26-31, 55-57, 83-80, 100-98.

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