GARVO Lanete and Kevin Alas keyed NLEX’s third quarter pullaway as the Road Warriors beat the Cebuana Lhuillier Gems, 80-68, on Monday at the JCSGO gym in Quezon City to close in on an automatic semifinal berth in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup.
Lanete and Alas each had 11 points in the third period to spearhead the Road Warriors to the lopsided victory.
NLEX won for the sixth straight time for a 9-1 win-loss card, staying in second place despite playing a tough schedule of two games a week after taking a long break last month when its key players saw action in the Southeast Asian Games.
“Medyo up and down ang laro namin. Hindi consistent probably because dere-derecho ang laro namin. Pero wala kaming reklamo dahil nangyari ito dahil sa Sinag,” NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez said.
NLEX remains in second place with Jumbo Plastic Linoleum in third spot with a 10-3 record, and Hog's Breath Cafe and Cagayan Valley in joint fourth at 8-3.
"We really have to win our last three games to get the first two," Fernandez said, referring to the top two spots in the standings and automatic spots to the semifinals.
Lanete and Alas kept NLEX well ahead after outscoring Cebuana Lhuillier, 28-20, in the third quarter to make it 67-48, the largest margin in the game.
Lanete finished with 21 points, making 5-of-11 attempts from three-point range, while Alas added 18 points, six rebounds, and six assists.
Cebuana Lhuillier dropped to 4-6.
NLEX (80) – Lanete 21, Alas 18, Ganuelas 13, Dela Cruz 6, J. Pascual 5, Long 5, Adeogun 4, Dela Rosa 2, K. Pascual 2, R. Pascual 2, Hermida 2, Raymundo 0, Koga 0, Amer 0.
Cebuana Lhuillier (68) – Zamar 16, Javier 10, Sumang 8, Martinez 8, Gamalinda 6, Paredes 5, Banal 4, Casajeros 4, Padilla 3, Leynes 2, Olivares 1, Bustos 1.
Quarterscores: 15-12; 39-28; 67-48; 80-68.