by Ernest Hernandez
Manila and Pasigueno set up the highest-scoring game ever in the Metro League with the former prevailing, 147-142, at the Hagonoy Sports Complex in Taguig City on Saturday.
Both teams eclipsed the previous single-team record of 128 made by the Caloocan Supremos on Oct. 16 in the All-Filipino Conference, but the Stars got the last laugh in the end.
In a sign of what to expect, Manila dropped 46 points in the first quarter, although conceding 37 Pasigueno points in the process.
Manila then threatened to pull away after extending their lead to 13, 77-64, at halftime.
However, Pasigueno slowly recovered and was within three, 137-140, with 2:16 left in the fourth.
Manila restored order after scoring five straight points before Carlo Lastimosa fired a dagger triple to answer that of Ryusei Koga.
Lastimosa finished with 31 points, five rebounds, two assists, and two steals for Manila, which moved to 2-3.
Francis Camacho added 19 points on 9-of-12 shooting, five rebounds, and one block, while Moustaph Arafat chipped in a double-double of 17 points and 13 rebounds with six assists, one block, and two steals.
Tim Gatchalian fired 27 points, five rebounds, and eight assists for Pasigueno, which find itself at 2-3 too.
Manila 147-Lastimosa 31, Camacho 19, Arafat 17, Acosta 16, Celada 12, Laude 12, Castro 12, Mendoza 10, Acibar 8, Qrquina 6, Yu 4, Manalo 0, Alban 0, Balagtas 0
Pasigueno 142-Gatchalian 27, Doroteo 26, Koga 22, Toba 19, Caranguian 19, Gallano 13, Chavenia 8, Rodriguez 8, Reyes 0
Quarterscores: 46-37, 77-64, 119-108, 147-142