Manila pins first loss on Muntinlupa
Unfazed by a hostile crowd, Manila overcame the only unbeaten team in the MPBL Datu Cup by using an unrelenting running game to stun Muntinlupa, 100-86, on Wednesday night at the jampacked Muntinlupa Sports Complex.
The Stars set a league record for most fastbreak points with 32 as Marvin Hayes, Chris Bitoon and Aris Dionisio joined forces in a second half assault that finally toppled the Cagers, who entered the game with an eight-game winning run.
Hayes, an ex-PBA player, picked up 18 points and seven rebounds in his finest performance yet for the Stars, while Dionisio scored 15 points and grabbed a season-high 20 rebounds.
Three other players finished in twin digits for Manila with Reil Cervantes scattering 17 points, Bitoon pumping in 16 and Vence Laude chipping in 13.
Held to just four points in the first half, Allan Manga came alive with 18 points in the last two quarters, but the Muntinlupa playmaker faded in the stretch when Manila pulled away for good.
The Cagers led by seven near the end of the third, but Bitoon scored four straight points in transition, before Dionisio beat the buzzer with a three to tie the game at 65 and trigger an early fourth-quarter run that put the Stars in control.
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