PAULO Hubalde delivered five straight points in the homestretch as Valenzuela SPV TOP Marketplace repulsed the Quezon City Capitals, 70-65, in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Season late Monday at Blue Eagle Gym in Quezon City.
Showing poise and confidence, Hubalde drilled in the dagger three, 66-59, with 1:02 to go then canned two free throws with 10.6 left to dash the comeback hopes of the Capitals and hand Valenzuela its second straight win after a first game loss.
Held to a point in the first half, Hubalde turned hot in the second, knocking in eight points in the third quarter before pouring in 13 in the fourth for a game-high 22 that pushed Valenzuela to 2-1 in the 31-team league founded by Sen. Manny Pacquiao.
Mark Andaya chipped in 10 points for Valenzuela, which ruled the boards, 62-47, behind the 12 rebounds of Jaymar Gimpayan, and 10 each by Reneford Ruaya and Orin Catacutan, son of former pro Israel Catacutan, who added nine points for coach Gerry Esplana.
The Capitals, led by Jomar Santos and Mark Carongoy, was ahead 32-27 at the half but yielded the lead, 46-48, at the end of the third quarter.
Carongoy wound up with 13 points, Clark Derige 12 and Santos 10.
Apart from being pounded underneath, the Capitals also faltered at the charity stripe, connecting on only 10 of 21 tries for a woeful 47.6 percent conversion.
The MPBL goes to Malolos on Tuesday with another three-game bill at Bulacan Capitol Gym. Newcomer Mindoro battles Paranaque at 4 p.m., followed by the Zamboanga-Caloocan tussle at 6:30 p.m. and the Bulacan-Basilan encounter at 8:30 p.m.