By Ivan Saldajeno
MANILA--Just when everyone at the Valenzuela City Astrodome thought Davao Occidental will tie the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League record for the longest winning streak, a late drama eventually led to the John Orbeta game-winner that put the club's winning run to an abrupt end.
Orbeta scored on a layup as the GenSan Warriors stopped the Tigers' winning run at 13 with an 84-83 win on Wednesday night.
The interesting endgame began with 1.3 seconds left when Rocky Clavel fouled Mark Yee after missing a mid-range jumper that could have given GenSan the lead.
However, the clock continued running until it read zero, and both team were already shaking hands.
But with the clock reset to 1.3, all the players were called back, and Yee missed the first of his two free throws.
Yee opted to intentionally miss the second charity, but he shot the ball way off left, leading to a free throw violation that gave GenSan a chance to call a timeout with only an 82-83 deficit to overhaul.
Davao Occ nearly forced a five-second inbound violation with its defense and eventually forced Clavel to a tough pass to Marlon Basco that the latter fumbled.
But the ball ended at Orbeta's hands, and he laid the ball in just in time to steal the victory.
Rodulfo Villaruel made 16 points, three rebounds, one steal, and one block for the Warriors, who barged to .500 at 9-9, taking the fifth spot in the Southern Division.
Leo Najorda made 18 markers, six boards, one dime, and one steal for the Tigers, who came one win short of the Bataan Risers' league record 14-game winning run.
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