Rain or Shine takes the top spot in the standings, Alaska wins fifth straight

Alaska Aces 109 – GlobalPort Batang Pier 103

With Calvin Abueva missing in action, the Alaska Aces relied on Vic Manuel and Antonio Campbell to get the win over the GlobalPort Batang Pier.

GlobalPort got big games from Stanley Pringle and Malcolm White. The two teamed up to power the Batang Pier to a double-digit lead in the first quarter. The Batang Pier held on to their double-digit lead for most of the game, until midway through the third period. Sean Anthony hit a jumper to give GlobalPort a 10-point lead with 4:30 left in the quarter.

That’s when Manuel and Campbell started to dominate the paint. The two powered an 11-0 run by repeatedly getting to the line. Manuel scored five points as the Aces zoomed ahead 82-81 on a layup inside by Manuel. Campbell and Manuel played big in the final period to help Alaska pull away. Alaska held a slim one-point lead with five minutes left in the game. Campbell scored inside and Manuel hit two baskets as Alaska went on a 11-0 run to build a 12-point lead and seal the win.

Manuel scored 22 points off the bench to lead Alaska. Campbell had 18 points and 18 rebounds. Banchero led the Alaska back court with 19 points and seven assists.

Rain or Shine Elasto Painters 99 – Magnolia Hotshots 96

It was a hard-fought game but the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters found enough in OT to take down the Magnolia Hotshots and move to a lead in the standings.

Both teams used a balanced scoring attack to try and pull away from the other. Back-to-back three-pointers from Rome Dela Rosa and Aldrech Ramos sparked a 12-2 run in the second quarter to give the Hothsots a 15-point lead. Rain or Shine answered right back with a 9-0 spurt as they concentrated their attack inside behind scoring from Reggie Johnson and Raymond Almazan to get back in the game. Rain or Shine eventually took the lead midway through the third. The game turned into a back-and-forth affair from that point on.

Rain or Shine held a four-point lead with 1:58 left in the game after Gabe Norwood sank two freebies. But their offense dried up. New Hotshot import Curtis Kelly scored in the paint to cut the lead down to just two. The Elasto Painters turned the ball over and missed a three which led to Jio Jalalon hitting a floater with 38 seconds left in regulation to tie the count. Almazan and Norwood missed jumpers in the final seconds as the game went into OT.

The extra period turned into a free throw shooting contest. Chris Tiu proved to be clutch as he sank four straight free throws to sandwich a Magnolia basket. That was enough to preserve the win for the Elasto Painters.