AMA Online Education pulled off a thrilling come-from-behind victory, 81–78, over the Blustar-KL Dragons in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup on Monday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Rashawn McCarthy exploded with 20 points, five rebounds, and six assists for the Titans, who registered their first win in five games.
The Fil-Am McCarthy, however, failed to seal the win late after botching a pair of free throws with 7.6 ticks to go and his team up by just three points.
Fortunately for the Titans, Chun Hong Ting turned the ball over in transition, allowing AMA to milk the clock and eventually seal the elusive victory.
“Malaking tinik ang nabunot. Muntik pa (matalo),” said AMA coach Mark Herrera moments after their conquest of the Dragons, who dropped to a 1-5 win-loss card.
The Dragons shifted into high gear in the third period. Juami Tiongson uncorked a three-pointer late in the quarter to give the Dragons a comfortable 64-52 cushion.
But things went downhill for Blustar from there as AMA gradually cut the deficit and gained the upper hand with 3:18 to go in the fourth quarter on Ryan Arambulo’s layup. Stephen Siruma then scored to put the Titans up, 77-74.
Tiongson retaliated and unloaded a triple to tie the game in the ensuing play. But AMA took the lead back as McCarthy responded with a three-pointer of his own.
Yi Hou Wong and Tiongson had 21 and 20 points, respectively, for the Dragons in a losing effort.
AMA 81 - McCarthy 20, Taganas 16, Jordan 13, Siruma 9, Arambulo 7, Publico 7, Bragais 5, Jo. Montemayor 4, Calma 0, Gutierrez 0, Magpantay 0, Je. Montemayor 0, Ragasa 0.
BLUSTAR 78 - Wong 21, Tiongson 20, Kuek 15, Yeo 11, Ma 10, Ting 1, Choo 0, Palma 0, Teo 0.
Quarters: 19-23, 36-36, 59-67, 81-78.