MANILA, Philippines – The Centro Escolar University Scorpions opened their 2018 PBA D-League with a bang as they eked out a 104-93 win to hand heavy favorites Marinerong Pilipino Skippers their second straight loss at the Ynares Sports Arena Monday, January 29.
CEU led by as much as 19 points in the 3rd period, 62-43, but saw it turned to ashes as the Skippers rode on a 32-13 run to tie the game at 75-all.
However, the Scorpions quickly pulled away again by scoring 8 straight points in the last 15 seconds, capped by a Joseph Manlangit buzzer-beating triple, for an 83-75 cushion, a lead they preserved in the final frame.
Rod Ebondo submitted 31 points on a 12-of-26 shooting on top of 9 boards to power the Scorpions while Manlangit finished with 19 markers, 8 coming in the payoff period, to go with 7 rebounds.
Judel Ric Fuentes added 20 points in the win, which saw the Scorpions hold the lead for more than 31 minutes.
“Maganda ‘yung tinakbo namin noong first half pero noong 3rd quarter, medyo nagrelax. Mabuti na lang noong 4th quarter, nagfocus sila sa aming gameplan kaya ganoon ang nangyari sa game,” said CEU head coach Yong Garcia.
(We played great in the first half but we relaxed in the 3rd quarter. Fortunately in the 4th quarter, they focused on our gameplan that is why we won.)
Rian Ayonayon paced Marinerong Pilipino, which dropped to 1-2, with 24 points and 8 boards while Billy Ray Robles and Renzo Subido chipped in 17 points apiece.
CEU (104): Ebondo 31, Fuentes 20, Manlangit 19, Wamar 11, Arim 9, Guinitaran 8, Cruz 4, Aquino 2, Caballero 0, Intic 0, Saber 0, Veron 0
Marinerong Pilipino (93): Ayonayon 24, Subido 17, Robles 17, Toth 10, Tratter 6, Iñigo 6, Paredes 6, Banal 5, Pasaol 2, Babilonia 0, Lopez 0, Terso 0
Quarters: 20-21, 55-41, 83-75, 104-93
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