THE Phuket Waves continued their winning ways in the Thailand Basketball League (TBL).
Drawing big games from Morakinyo Michael Williams, Raymond Edward Miller, James Martinez and Hernal Escosio, Phuket Waves brought down Ban Bueng Devil Rays, 99-82, to move within a win of capturing the title at the National Stadium.
Williams provided the firepower with monstrous double-double performance of 28 points and 18 rebounds in 40 minute of action.
Miller, who missed one game during their semifinal win over top seed Bangkok Tigers due to dehydration, added 25 points and 23 rebounds.
Martinez the former PBA player-turned-Phuket playing coach, flirted with a triple double of 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting, 12 assists and seven rebounds.
And Escosio chipped in with 17 points and six rebounds in another superb game.
“Happy, pero hindi pa tapos ang laban. Kailangan manalo ng isang game pa, kaya ang sabi ko sa mga players, pati kay assistant coach Ronald Mojica, na dapat mas doble ang effort sa game 2,” said Martinez, whose team is being supported by Sprinto Shades as the official eyewear; Winzir and MEBL Apparel.
“Mabuti talaga nag step up yun mga imports namin lalo na si Ray at Kenyo (Williams). Si Wowie (Escosio) grabe yun depensa at opensa nila. Pati yun mga locals sumunod sa game plan namin,” added Martinez, who is also best remembered during his playing days with San Beda College and University of the East.
“Pero hindi kami pwede mag- kumpiyansa, lalo na magaling din ang kalaban. Need namin ma-close out yun game 2 ngayon, dahil ayaw na namin umabot pa sa game 3.”
Mvuezolo Joe-Junior, Panudet Kularptip and Jose Nouchan Thavong led the losing effort for Ban Bueng Devil Rays.
Joe-Junior finished with a team-high 22 points, Kularptip added 20 points and Thavong contributed 19 points and 16 rebounds.
Phuket Waves (99) — Williams 28, Miller 25, Martinez 19, Escosio 17, Saema 6, Saeming 2, Chaisuttimetheekul 2, Jaibunjerd 0, Seangsuriya 0
Ban Bueng Devil Rays (82) – Joe-Junior 22, Kularptip 20, Thavong 19, Thitikhunrat 12, Wongdee 3, Tantiwong 2, Rongruang 2, watngam 2, Poungmala 0, Chotjiraanan 0
Quarterscores: 26-20, 58-48, 80-68, 99-82.