Balkman-Brownlee a mean one-two punch as Alab sends Saigon Heat crashing
Justine Brownlee had 25 points and 15 boards for Alab Pilipinas. ABL photo

TANDUAY Alab Pilipinas continued to be effective on the road, beating the Saigon Heat, 95-87, on Sunday in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) at the CIS Arena in Ho Chi Minh City.

Renaldo Balkman and Justin Brownlee stood at the forefront of the Alab attack and got ample support from the locals to extend the Philippine side's win streak to three for a 6-4 win-loss record.

Alab also continued to hold steady on the road, winning its fifth straight game away from home despite the dispiriting news that the squad’s major sponsor, Tanduay, has pulled out support.

Balkman had 26 points, 20 rebounds, six assists, and four steals while overcoming a scare when he needed to return to the bench late in the second quarter due to an injury.

Brownlee, meanwhile, had 25 points and 15 rebounds, including crucial baskets in the second half that thwarted numerous runs by Saigon.

Lawrence Domingo provided an offensive spark for Alab off the bench, scoring 14 points in the contest while Josh Urbiztondo added 13 points.

Alab made the decisive 10-0 break behind Brownlee, whose five-point swing opened a 64-54 lead for the Philippine-based side. Domingo’s lay-up gave Alab a 70-63 lead entering the fourth.

The Heat came within two points in the fourth but Balkman and Brownlee responded each time.

A Balkman putback increased Alab’s lead to six, 89-83.

Moses Morgan scored 21 of his 27 points in the first half for the Heat, who led by five at the break, 47-42.

Fil-American scorer Michael Williams was held to nine points as Saigon fell to 4-5.

The scores:

Tanduay Alab Pilipinas 95 - Balkman 26, Brownlee 25, Domingo 14, Urbiztondo 13, Parks 10, Hontiveros 3, Maierhofer 2, Celiz 2, Raymundo 0.

Saigon Heat 87 - Morgan 27, Scott 26, Esho 23, Williams 9, Arnold 2, H. Nguyen 0.

Quarterscores: 20-21; 42-47; 70-63; 95-87.

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