UAAP MVP Aljun Melecio once again stood out as he bailed out Team Punks in a 103-98 win over team ype in the Slam Rising Stars Classic on Sunday night at Gatorade Hoops Center.
La Salle Zobel star Melecio finished with 12 points - the most important a three-pointer in the final stretch that knocked the wind out of the rallying Team Hype's sails.
Juan Gomez de Liaño led the way for Team Punks with 16 points. Evan Nelle of San Beda Rizal added 15 while La Salle Greenhills standout Ricci Rivero added 10 for the winners.
NCAA MVP Mike Enriquez pulled Team Hype within 95-98 on an and-1 play but Melecio responded by draining a pull-up triple over Xavier School star Tyler Tio for a 101-95 lead for Team Punks with 44 seconds left to play.
"I kept reminding them that as the game went on na 'yung competition is gonna be higher," said Team Punks coach Gian Nazario, a deputy coach at La Salle Zobel.
"I'm happy the players responded, they pushed through," he added. "You have to give the credit to the players, even to (those from) Team Hype."
Tio attempted to answer Melecio's heroics but his own three-point try failed to find the mark.
"Latter part of the game, Tyler was getting most of the possessions reminding them na 'yun mangyayari, concentrate on playing defense (on him)," said Nazario.
National U standout John Lloyd Clemente made 23 points for Team Hype. Tio added 16 and Ateneo recruit Gian Mamuyac chipped in 13.
Team Punk 103 – Gomez de Llano 16, Nelle 15, Melecio 12, Abadeza 12, Rivero 10, Baltazar 9, Ildefonso 9, Concepcion 7, Paraiso 5, Dela Torre 4, Bordeos 2, Ong 2
Team Hype 98 – Clemente 23, Tio 16, Mamuyac 13, Enriquez 10, Abuhijle 7, Gomez de Llano 6, Andrade 5, Roman 5, Pagsanjan 5, Sario 4, Tibayan 4
Quarterscores: 28-24, 46-51, 72-69, 103-98