Alab Pilipinas clamps Hong Kong anew for 7th straight win
MANILA, Philippines – San Miguel Alab Pilipinas once again conquered Hong Kong Eastern, 96-81, to stretch their winning streak to a season-best 7 games in the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) in Hong Kong on Friday, February 8.
Renaldo Balkman, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, led the pack with 32 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists in a full 40-minute grind for Alab.
Ray Parks also came to impress as the two-time Local MVP tallied 23 markers on an efficient 9-of-12 (75%) clip and grabbed 7 boards for his second straight 20-point game since returning from injury.
Hulking 7-foot-3 giant PJ Ramos again went blow-for-blow with fellow 7-foot-5 titan Sam Deguara, finishing with 11 points, 14 boards and 9 assists to fall shy of a triple-double.
Hong Kong – which bowed to the Philippine squad for the third time – was well within striking distance after a triple by O'Darien Bassett, 74-75, at the 8:53 mark of the 4th quarter.
However, from that point, the streaky Alab offense left their foes in the dust yet again, pumping out a game-clinching 21-6 run.
Caelan Tiongson sealed the deal with consecutive layups to set Alab up by 15, 96-81, in the final minute of regulation.
Deguara held his own and steered away from fouls in the loss, finishing with a 20-point, 16-rebound double-double in 38 minutes of action.
Bassett led all Eastern scorers with 24 markers while fellow import Marcus Elliot chipped in 18 points, 7 boards and 6 dimes.
Alab Pilipinas 96 – Balkman 32, Parks 23, Ramos 11, Tiongson 8, Alvano 7, Domingo 6, Urbiztondo 4, Javelona 3, Rosser 2.
Hong Kong 81 - Bassett 24, Deguara 20, Elliott 18, Siu 8, Chan 5, Lee 3, Lau 3, Tang 0, Yang 0, Xu 0.
Quarters: 28-20, 53-53, 73-71, 96-81.