Ramirez RJ Ramirez shines for Bacoor.

Rizal, Bacoor tally close victories in OKbet-MPBL

June 23, 2022 People's Tonight 132 views

RIZAL and Bacoor edged their respective rivals and leveled their slates in the OKbet-MPBL (Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League) 4th Season presented by Xtreme at the Orion Sports Complex in Bataan.

The Rizal Golden Coolers continued their recovery with a 66-61 victory over the Manila Stars while the Bacoor Strikers also rebounded by tripping the Bataan Risers, 76-74, in the nightcap of a triple-bill.

Pampanga likewise got back on track by subduing Laguna, 75-68, in the opener.

Led by homegrown Troy Mallillin and Jolo Mendoza, the Golden Coolers posted their second straight win after dropping their first two games in the 22-team tournament.

Mallillin dropped eight of his 12 points in the fourth quarter apart from grabbing 8 rebounds, while Mendoza also wound up with 12 points.

They were supported by Laurence Paul Victoria and Alvin John Capobres with 11 and 10, respectively, in handing the Stars their fifth defeat in six games.

Manila got 15 points plus 16 rebounds from Allen Bryant Liwag, 14 from veteran Gary David, a newly elected councilor of Dinalupihan, Bataan, and 11 from Dan Sara.

Showing better cohesion after dropping their first game, the Strikers banked on debuting RJ Ramirez and homegrown Mark Mantuano to foil the Risers’ bid for a second straight victory.

Ramirez and Mantuano scored on back-to-back drives to give Bacoor a 76-71 lead with 47 seconds left.

Mantuano wound up with 15 points and seven rebounds, while Ramirez tallied 10 points, four assists and two steals.

Bataan’s Dante Paguiao split two free throws and Guilmer Dela Torre knocked in a jumper to peg the final count.

Reeling from three straight defeats, Pampanga banked on the hot hands of homegrown icons Archie Concepcion and Jayson Castro Apolonio to pull down Laguna Krah Asia to 1-2.

Concepcion posted 23 points plus five rebounds, while Mantuano tallied 16 points plus six rebounds.