Muntinlupa seeks to extend MPBL finals to Game 5
With momentum swinging to their side, the Muntinlupa Cagers seek to send the MPBL Anta Rajah Cup into a winner-take-all Game 5 when they square off with Batangas City Athletics on Thursday at Muntinlupa Sports Center.
The Cagers lived to fight another day after a thrilling 82-77 victory in Game 3 where Pari Llagas and Allan Mangahas delivered the telling blows to cut the series lead, 2-1.
An 18-1 blitz to start the game keyed the Cagers’ first win in the series as the Athletics, backed by Tanduay, failed to complete a comeback with Llagas and Dave Moralde hitting clutch baskets down the stretch.
“I think we’re going to have a Game 5,” said Muntinlupa coach Aldrin Morante, fully confident that the Cagers can tie the series. “We’re capable of coming back. Hopefully in the next game, we start strong again.”
Llagas had 11 of his 19 points in the final quarter, including a short jumper with 55 seconds remaining to extend the lead, 79-74. After Paul Varilla completed a three-point play, Moralde buried a turnaround jumper for an 81-77 advantage.
Mangahas finished with 23 points and nine assists for the Cagers, who limited the high-scoring Val Acuna to a tournament-low three points.