Racal recovers in time to down upset-thinking Victoria

By Dugout Philippines

QUEZON CITY—Racal thwarted Victoria Sports-MLQU’s comeback bid and scored a 75-70 triumph to move to joint second place Tuesday in the 2017 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup at JCSGO Gym.

Lervin Flores provided the stability on the defensive end late as his huge stops in the clutch allowed the Tile Masters to escape with another gritty win. He wound up with 14 points, 11 rebounds, and two blocks.

Kent Salado also fired 12 markers, 10 boards, and five assists, while Roider Cabrera got 10 points and six rebounds in the victory.

The win helped Racal level with Cafe France at second spot, with both teams carrying an identical 6-1 record.

“Ang daming miscommunications. I told them na wag makumpyansa kasi (Victoria) is very deceiving. Luckily, we made stops and we had good rotations in the end game,” said Coach Jerry Codinera.

Racal lost grip of its nine-point advantage, 69-60 with 6:21 left in the fourth period as Victoria unleashed a 10-0 charge to take a 70-69 lead.

The Tile Masters, though, had an ace in Flores and Sidney Onwubere as they clamped down on defense in the end game to pull off another tight one.

Racal also rebounded from its 77-75 defeat to Jose Rizal University last week to get back to its winning ways.

Aris Dionisio anchored Victoria (1-7) with 16 points and 18 rebounds, while Robbie Herndon also got 16 markers and six boards in the losing effort.