Standings: Group A: AFP (6-0), PNP (5-2), PITC (4-3), Senate (3-3); Group B: Malacañang-PSC (5-1), NHA (4-2), DA (3-4), Judiciary (2-5)
MALACANANG-Philippine Sports Commission and Philippine National Police (PNP) boosted their bids for outright semis berths with victories in the 7th UNTV Cup held over the weekend at the Pasig City Sports Center.
The Malacañang-PSC Kamao hiked their record to 5-1 in Group B following a 75-66 win over the defending champions Senate Defenders through the hot-shooting of Erick dela Cuesta and Michael Ignacio.
A one-time scoring champion of the now-defunct Philippine Basketball League (PBL), Dela Cuesta scattered 22 points while Ignacio added 14 points as the Kamao bucked a slow start that saw them fall behind 23-3 at the end of the first quarter to prevail.
It was in the third frame where the Kamao turned things around, outscoring the Defenders, 31-16, to take the lead, 59-46, going into the final 10 minutes of play.
As usual, it was Ollan Omiping who starred for PNP in its fourth straight win – a 69-61 decision over the Judiciary Magis.
The PNP Responders improved to 5-2 while jeopardizing Judiciary’s own quarterfinal bid as the Magis absorbed their fifth defeat against only two wins.
Omiping, a former star player of University of the East, tallied 17 points and seven boards. ABL veteran Harold Sta. Cruz had only two points but came through with a big defensive play in the crunch aside from hauling down seven boards.
In the other game, Haddi Porto erupted for 26 points as PITC clobbered Department of Agriculture, 88-62, for its fourth win in seven games.
The DA Food Masters slipped to 3-4.