Mindoro snaps MPBL skid with escape over Rizal

Mindoro snaps MPBL skid with escape over Rizal
Richard Abanes topscores for Mindoro and hits the go-ahead free throw in the dying seconds

BATAAN, Philippines – Mindoro snapped its five-game skid in the Chooks-to-Go Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Cup after escaping the also-ran Rizal-Xentro, 74-73, at the Bataan People’s Center on Thursday, December 19.

With 2.9 ticks left, Richard Abanes was fouled by Rexander Leynes in a fastbreak opportunity and went 1-of-2 from the line to give Mindoro a 74-73 advantage.

The Golden Coolers ran out of gas in the endgame with Jordan Rios failing to connect from the left wing as time expired.

Abanes finished with 22 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assists to help Mindoro post a 9-18 win-loss slate, good for 12th place in the Southern Division.

“It was a good win for us ‘no, especially na-hit namin ‘yung purpose namin in joining this league is may bagong umusbong na player tulad ni Richard Abanes. It’s a big win for us,” said Mindoro head coach and team owner Justin Tan.

(It was a good win for us, especially since we fulfilled our purpose of joining this league to have a player like Richard Abanes make a name for himself. It’s a big win for us.)

Down by 6 points in the 4th quarter, the troika of Rios, Jayvee Vidal, and Leynes connived in a 6-0 rally to help Rizal knot the game at 73 with 1:10 left.

Rodel Vaygan added 16 points and 5 rebounds, while Luigi Natada and Mac Baracael had 9 and 8 markers, respectively, for Mindoro.

Meanwhile, Rios paced Rizal with 24 points and 9 boards.

Mark Benitez added 13 markers and 10 rebounds, while Lord Casajeros had 10 points, 3 rebounds, and 3 assists for the Golden Coolers.

Rizal now stands second to the last in the Northern Division with a 4-17 record.

The Scores

Mindoro 74 – Abanes 22, Vaygan 16, Natada 9, Baracael 8, Ilarde 5, Astrero 5, Axalan 4, Peñaflor 3, Galinato 2, Matias 0.

Rizal-Xentro Mall 73 – Rios 24, Benitez 13, Casajeros 10, Vidal 8, Gregorio 6, Bautista 4, Saliente 4, Leynes 2, Bacay 2, Lacastesantos 0.

Quarters: 17-13, 41-36, 52-49, 74-73.

– Rappler.com

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