By Rafael Bandayrel
Pasay Travel City escaped San Juan Whatta Whatta, 65-64, in the 2018 16-and-under Metro Basketball Tournament of the Metro Manila Sports Fest held at the Pasay Sports Complex.
Travel City was in from by nine points with less than two minutes remaining in the game, but Whatta Whatta found a way to catch up by sparking an 8-0 run that cut Pasay’s lead to one.
San Juan had multiple opportunities to steal the game in the dying seconds, but they were unable to convert on every attempt.
Whatta Whatta’s Mathhew Calilong missed a three pointer with 12 seconds left but San Juan got the ball back courtesy of a John Brixton Castro steal. Castro was immediately fouled by Glenn Sienes which gave him the opening to win the game or force overtime.
But Castro succumbed to pressure as he missed both shots from the charity stripe. Christopher John Tolentino kept San Juan’s hopes alive when he snagged the offensive rebound but he also missed a mid-range jumper that would have shifted the outcome.
Sienes spearheaded Travel City with his 20 points, nine rebounds, and eight assists. Guard Rysel Reyes also contributed by listing 18 points.
Whatta Whatta forward Tolentino is the only player in his squad to hit double digits as he scored 22 points for the losing squad.
Pasay earned their second consecutive victory as they improve to 2-4. San Juan, on the other hand, suffers three straight losses as the team slides to 1-4.
Travel City will have a lengthy rest following today’s win. They will return against the Taguig Generals on Thursday, in the same venue. MBT action resumes for San Juan on Tuesday, as they battle the Las Pinas Home Defenders at the Hagonoy Gym, in Taguig.
Pasay Travel City (65) – Sienes 20, Reyes 18, Cervantes 6, Arcilla 4, Frias 4, Arnejo 3, Delos Santos 3, Lopez 3, Ante 2, Damian 1, Ramos 1
San Juan Whatta Whatta (64) – Tolentino 22, Calilong 9, A.Castro 9, Abalos 6, J.Castro 6, Agravante 2, Quililan 2, Mayono 2, Palomero 2, Table 2, Valeros 2