Macau snaps Alab win streak in ABL thriller

JR Isaga
Macau snaps Alab win streak in ABL thriller
Alab Pilipinas suffers its second loss of the young ABL season

MANILA, Philippines – The Macau Wolf Warriors gave San Miguel Alab Pilipinas a rude New Year’s welcome with a hard-fought 98-93 win in the ASEAN Basketball League on Sunday, January 5.

With the win, Macau rose to 3-4 for the season while Alab fell to 4-2 at 2nd place behind the 5-1 Mono Vampire.

After being down as many as 11 points, 9-20, early in the 1st quarter, the Alab home team stormed all the way back and took its first lead of the game, 49-47, off a midrange jumper by upstart Jeremiah Gray to start the 3rd quarter.

Both teams kept jockeying for the lead well into the 4th frame as Louie Vigil and Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser scored consecutive buckets to give Alab an 85-83 advantage with 6:53 left.

However, Macau responded with a 7-0 run to seize a 90-85 lead.

Although Alab got their bearings back and led one last time, 91-90, off two Nick King free throws in the final 2:45, Macau then delivered an 8-0 finishing kick, capped by a breakaway layup by Zhi Keng Tang for the 98-91 gap in the final minute.

“Anytime you can come to this country and get a win, it feels satisfying,” said Macau head coach Todd Purves. “You know you beat a good team.”

“Jimmy Alapag, I knew him as a player and as a coach, he’s done a hell of a job. It feels good to come out here with a win.”

King, who was named the ABL Player of the Month for December 2019, finished with a game-high 33 points and 12 rebounds on a stellar 13-of-20 clip.

However, his fellow World Imports struggled mightily as Khalif Wyatt was held to 15 points on 3-of-12 shooting, albeit with 12 assists.

Alab’s Maltese monster Sam Deguara also limped to a 4-point, 7-board finish in just 21 minutes due to foul trouble.

Meanwhile, Douglas Herring and Julian Boyd paced the Wolf Warriors with 21 markers apiece in the huge upset win.

The Scores

Macau 98 – Herring 21, Boyd 21, Cai 15, Ewing 13, Hu 11, Thomas 10, Tang 7, Shentu 0.

Alab Pilipinas 93 – King 33, Wyatt 15, Domingo 11, Gray 10, Ganuelas-Rosser 9, Brickman 7, Deguara 4, Vigil 4, Heading 0.

Quarters: 25-19, 47-47, 80-76, 98-93.

– Rappler.com

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