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    Beermen gifted solo ABL lead after Dragons slay Warriors in thriller

    Apr 12, 2013
    Fil-Am Justin Melton topscored for the Westsports Malaysia Dragons with 17 points. Jerome Ascano

    WESTPORTS Malaysia Dragons defeated the Indonesia Warriors, 80-79, on Friday night in Kuala Lumpur, handing the San Miguel Beermen the solo lead in the Asean Basketball League standings.

    Fil-Tongan Moala Tautuaa hit the go-ahead tip-in, and Gavin Edwards scored a three-point play in the closing moments of the game to complete the Dragons’ second-half comeback against the Warriors.

    Justin Melton, a member of the Gilas Pilipinas cadet pool, topscored for the Ariel Vanguardia-mentored Dragons with 17 points, while Tautuaa added 16. Edwards and fellow import Marcus Hubbard added 14 apiece.

    With the Dragons’ victory, the idle Beermen, who own a 10-3 win-loss slate, grabbed the solo lead in the team standings by a few percentage points over the Warriors (12-4).

    San Miguel can further improve its record when the Beermen face the Singapore Slingers on Saturday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

    The Dragons trailed, 32-42, but made 29 points in the third quarter to close in on the Warriors.

    Mario Wuysang connected on a triple with two minutes and 12 seconds left in the fourth but Tautuaa scored a follow-up as the Dragons regained the lead, 77-76.

    Edwards then scored on a tough inside stab for a three-point play to widen the lead to 80-76.

    Wuysang cut Malaysia’s lead to one point after a three-pointer at the 27.6-second mark. But after Edwards missed a fadeaway shot at the 24-second shot clock buzzer, Indonesia ran out of time for one last offensive play.

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    Fil-Am Justin Melton topscored for the Westsports Malaysia Dragons with 17 points. Jerome Ascano
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