Philippine Patriots outclass Bangkok Cobras in ABL opener | Inquirer Sports

Philippine Patriots outclass Bangkok Cobras in ABL opener

By: - Reporter / @junavINQ
/ 10:09 PM January 14, 2012

MANILA, Philippines—Nakiea Miller found his zone early and the AirAsia Philippine Patriots easily tore the visiting Bangkok Cobras to shreds, 86-58, Saturday night in the opener of the 2012 Asean Basketball League at the San Juan Gym.

The 6-foot-10 Miller unloaded 20 of his 24 points in the first half while Anthony Johnson added 17 for the Patriots, who used a 29-5 run in the second period to jumpstart their bid to reclaim the title they lost last season.

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By the time Miller was done, the Patriots were beyond recall, 66-39.

“We’re a small team so we have to rely heavily on quickness. We also focused on defense to neutralize the size disadvantage,” said Patriots coach Glenn Capacio.

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The Patriots forced the Cobras into committing 15 turnovers in the first half, nine of them in the second when the lead ballooned to 51-23.

Baffled by the flawless defensive ploy of the Patriots, the Cobras scored only five points in that span as imports Gentry Lewis, Bruce Brown and Marvin Cruz couldn’t get their shots to fall.

“Miller has been adjusting well with his new teammates. He’s our biggest option at the post,” said Capacio. “Tonight, we had many fastbreaks because we controlled the boards.”

Beating the Cobras, 44-35, off the glass, the Patriots had 18 fastbreak points against Bangkok’s six as Miller grabbed 18 rebounds, eight off the offensive boards. He also added four blocks.

The Patriots will be tested by the San Miguel Beermen next on Jan. 21 at the Ynares Sports Center in Pasig City.

“They have bigger wing players. We have to improve our defense. Our offense is always there but everything has to start on the defensive end,” said Capacio.

Warren Ybañez had nine points while Ardy Larong and Jonathan Fernandez had eight apiece built on accurate perimeter shooting and a couple of high-arching three-pointers.

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Coached by Joe Bryant, father of NBA superstar Kobe of the LA Lakers, the Cobras managed to squeeze out 11 points from Cruz while the seven-foot Brown finished with nine points and two rebounds.

Lewis had nine points and 10 boards but he expended more energy complaining to the referees and talking foolishly on every deadball situation.

The scores:
PH PATRIOTS 86—Miller 24, Johnson 17, Ybanez 9, Fernandez 8, Larong 8, Laure 6, Ramos 4, Vergara 4, Rodriguez 4, Juntilla 2, Raymundo 0, Arellano 0.
BANGKOK 58—Brown 11, Cruz 9, Apiromvilaichi 9, Lewis 9, Kruatiwa 8, Kongkum 6, Limsuwan 6, Chaiwat 0.
Quarters: 22-18; 51-23; 68-42; 86-58

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TAGS: ABL, Anthony Johnson, Bangkok Cobras, Basketball, Bruce Brown, Gentry Lewis, Glenn Capacio, Joe Bryant, Marvin Cruz, Nakiea Miller, Philippine Patriots, San Miguel Beermen, Sports
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