MPBL: Bacoor beats Soccsksargen to extend streak, Manila routs Bulacan
MANILA, Philippines–Bacoor coach Chris Gavina was a picture of relief after the Strikers subdued the Soccsksargen Marlins, 65-60, Wednesday night to preserve their winning streak in the MPBL Lakan Season at Bulacan Capitol Gym in Malolos.
Facing the team with one of the worst records in the league, the Strikers blew hot and cold before turning to guard Ian Melencio down the stretch to secure their sixth straight victory.
A breakout star for Imus in the league’s first season, Melencio finished with 14 points in his finest performance since moving to the only other Cavite-based team in the MPBL.
Gavina warned his team from complacency as the Strikers struggled to put away the Marlins (0-4) in the second half even with the return of reigning MVP Gab Banal.
Part of the Mighty Sports team that ruled the Jones Cup in Taiwan over the weekend, Banal finished with 12 points and eight assists.
“This type of wins give us something to learn, something that we can use on moving forward,” said Gavina, whose team sits on top of the South division.
“But we really have a lot of things to improve on.”
Manila also sustained its winning run by overwhelming Bulacan, 93-72, to keep second spot in the North division, behind San Juan. In the other game, Basilan ended its losing slide at the expense of Valenzuela, 87-78.
Former PBA player Carlo Lastimosa fired a career-best 24 points for the Stars, who showcased their depth and firepower by outscoring the Kuyas, 52-32, on bench points.