Taiwan's Formosa outlasts banged-up Alab Pilipinas
MANILA, Philippines – The Formosa Dreamers kept their late-season charge rolling in the ABL, outlasting an undermanned Alab Pilipinas, 79-71, in Taiwan on Sunday, March 10.
The victory propelled the Dreamers to a 17-6 record, threatening league-leader Alab, which slipped to 18-5 and wound up just a full game ahead with still two matches left to play in the regular season.
With the Filipino side cut down to size as stalwarts Renaldo Balkman, Caelan Tiongson, Law Domingo and Brandon Rosser sat out due to injuries, Formosa import Tevin Glass feasted on the glass with a game-high 28 points and 12 rebounds.
Will Artino also delivered with 18 markers and 12 boards, including a clutch tip-in in the final 1:55 of regulation that pushed the Dreamers’ lead to 6, 77-71.
The defending ABL champion Alab was well withing striking distance all game long, most notably after a big Ray Parks triple to inch within two, 71-73, in the last 3 minutes of the 4th.
However, their shortened nine-man rotation caught up with them as Glass and Artino teamed up for a late 6-0 run, the final blow to Alab’s upset hopes.
Alab’s only active import PJ Ramos was visibly gassed down the stretch without his Puerto Rican partner Balkman to help out on defense. He finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds on a lackluster 5-of-18 (27%) clip while also missing all 6 of his attempts from deep.
Parks, the reigning two-time Local MVP, fared way better and led the team with 27 markers on an 11-of-17 (64%) shooting with 6 boards and 2 assists.
Young point guard Ethan Alvano also stepped up with a near-triple-double of 14 points, 9 rebounds and 8 dimes in the losing effort. The 22-year-old stud also chipped in 2 steals and 2 blocks to complete the impressive stat line.
As head coach Jimmy Alapag earlier said in their last home win against Macau, Balkman and the rest of the injured cast will remain on a day-to-day basis.
Alab will face Formosa one more time in their final home game of the regular season next Sunday, March 17, at the Sta Rosa Sports Complex in Laguna.
Formosa 79 - Glass 27, Miller 18, Artino 16, Chen 7, Lee 5, Chien 4, Cheng 2, Tien 0, Wu 0.
Alab Pilipinas 71 - Parks 27, Alvano 14, Ramos 12, Urbiztondo 8, Javelona 5, Rivero 4, Sumalinog 1, Alabanza 0, Torres 0.
Quarters: 22-26, 35-37, 59-62, 79-71.