Pacquiao’s Kia knocks out Blackwater in PBA opener
BOCAUE, Bulacan, Philippines — Manny Pacquiao made his PBA debut and Kia didn’t let its playing-coach down.
Kia Motors went on a scoring binge in the third quarter to beat fellow newcomer Blackwater Sports, 80-66, in the opener of the 40th Season of the PBA before a record crowd at the Philippine Arena here.
LA Revilla, who had a career-game with 23 points, led a blistering third quarter run where the Sorento outscored the Elite, 38-17, that turned a nine-point deficit to a 63-51 lead that they never relinquished.
“I’m just overwhelmed by the moment and thankful that we won,” said Revilla. “I just played the game, we played the game. We trusted the system, trusted coach.”
The former La Salle guard Revilla unleashed 14 points in the third quarter alone.
“Maganda nilaro ni LA kaya nabuhayan yung buong team (LA played great. His play lifted up the whole team),” said Pacquiao, who started and played the first seven minutes of the game.
The boxing icon didn’t score and had two turnovers in his debut.
“I wasn’t surprised with how good we played,” said Kia assistant coach Glenn Capacio.
Hans Thiele and Reil Cervantes added 13 apiece for the Sorento.
The Elite led by 13, 31-18, in the first half before the Sorento regrouped.
Blackwater had eight players with at least six points led by JP Erram and Juami Tiongson, who scored 10 each.
The game drew 52,612 fans, by far the most number of people in a PBA match.
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