Road Warriors sustain surge, clip Shakers
NLEX finally made its way to the top two after hacking out a 75-66 decision of tough Fruitas yesterday in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup at JCSGO Gym.
John Byron Villarias unloaded four triples in a decisive rally as the Road Warriors stretched their winning run to five games following a rough start to their title defense.
“I’m happy he finally regained his touch,” NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez said of Villarias, who finished with a team-high 16 points.
The Road Warriors forged a tie for second with idle Café France (5-2) in a bid for an outright semifinal berth, the incentive given to the top two teams at the end of the eliminations.
Cagayan Valley, last conference’s runner-up that also went through a rough patch, snapped a three-game skid with a 79-68 drubbing of Hog’s Breath Cafe.
Ping Exciminiano poured in a game-high 22 points, including a crucial trey that helped the Rising Suns fend off the Razorbacks’ late rally.
Big Chill later joined Cagayan Valley at 4-4 after a 92-63 rout of Informatics.
Terrence Romeo knocked in 18 points to power the Superchargers, who erected a 21-point lead, 31-10, early.
The Road Warriors rallied from a 46-53 deficit in the second half as Villarias fired back-to-back triples.
Matt Ganuelas gave the Road Warriors a 56-53 buffer at the start of the fourth period before eight straight points from Villarias padded the lead to 64-53.
The Shakers dropped to 4-3.
CAGAYAN VALLEY 79—Exciminiano 22, Celada 15, Jamito 10, Bringas 9, Lao 7, Canta 4, Melano 4, Matute 3, Montemayoir 2, Webb 0, Poligrates 0.
HOG’S BREATH CAFE 68—Lima 15, Belorio 12, Morillo 8, Robles 6, Malinao 6, Macasaet 6, Alguno 5, Roy 5, Cayabyab 4, Eman 1, Armecin 0, Pacquiao 0.
Quarters: 25-13, 44-35, 63-47, 79-68
NLEX 75—Villarias 16, Salva 10, Ganuelas 10, Lanete 9, Pascual J. 8, Pascual R. 8, Long 4, Hermida 4, Camson 4, Alas 4.
FRUITAS 66—Lastimosa 16, Escobal 15, Caram 10, Cruz 9, Escoto 4, Colina 4, Tolomia 3, Mendoza 3, Antonio 2, Banal 0, Pogoy 0.
Quarters: 18-14, 38-38, 53-53, 75-66
BIG CHILL 92—Romeo 18, Villahermosa 11, Montilla 10, Canlas 9, Lozada 9, Bringas 7, Santos 7, Nuyles 7, Bonifacio 4, Heruela 4, Holstein 4, Dumapig 2.
INFORMATICS 63—Mabayo 17, Teng 13, Bartolo 8, Melegrito 7, Cabonce 6, Acidre 6, Benitez 2, Acuna 2, Montuano 2, Morales 0, Altamirano 0.
Quarters: 31-10, 53-27, 68-45, 92-63
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