MANILA salvaged a measure of pride and revenge after scoring a come-from-behind 88-85 win over Makati to cop third place in the inaugural Metro Basketball Tournament for players 16-and-under Friday at the San Andres gym.
Ivan Christian Cabusao and Edward Wilson Batac presided over five straight unanswered points by the All-Stars in the final minute of the game to seal the win during the penultimate day of the meet, an initial project of the Metro Manila Sports Fest in coordination with the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) under new Chairman Danilo Lim and now General Manager Tim Orbos, and the Metro Manila Council.
The win avenged the All-Stars’ 88-83 loss to the Skycrapers in the qualification round.
Cabusao finished in double-doubles with 24 points and 11 rebounds, while Batac did the same with 18 markers and a game-high 19 boards as the duo rallied Manila back from as much as a 68-60 deficit early in the fourth quarter.
Makati took the lead for the last time at 85-83 on a Johnred Louise Lugo jumper at the 1:13 mark before the Cabusao and Batac took over for the All-Stars.
It was a sorry loss for the Skycrapers, who were fancied to win it all after romping through the classification and qualification phases unbeaten in their first seven games going to the semis.
But Paranaque stunned them in the semis, before absorbing another defeat against Manila to end their stint on a losing note.
The Divisional Championship games, meanwhile, will be played Saturday also at the San Andres gym, with Paranaque and Marikina disputing the league’s inaugural title. Commissioner Pido Jarencio and tournament director Bonnie Tan will be on hand to supervise the games.
In other Friday games of the meet which has Higer Bus as major sponsor, saw Valenzuela turning back Mandaluyong, 93-90, in the battle for fifth place, while Taguig demolished Navotas, 94-72, to settle for ninth place.
The month-long meet has PLDT as the official internet provider, Spalding as the official ball, and presented by Excellent Noodles, Summit Natural Drinking Water, Synergy 88 Digital, World Balance, Regan Industrial Sales, Gadgets In Style, Gerry’s Grill, Cloudfone, Firefly Lighting, Frabelle Foods, Burlington, Higer, Stonini, Star Bread, Cobra Energy Drink, Grips Hair Wax, Alcoplus Alcohol, and Glitter.ph.
Thursday games results saw Quezon City clobbered Muntinlupa, 77-54 to finish 11th place, while Pateros defeated Pasay, 65-54 for 17th place and avoiding a last-place finish in the tournament.