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Muntinlupa takes down Bulacan to bolster bid for 2nd seed

By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—Muntinlupa got a huge headstart in the race for the second seed in the Southern Division playoffs in the MPBL Datu Cup after drubbing Bulacan, 86-66, at the Muntinlupa Sports Center on Thursday night.

The Cagers turned to their defense in the first half before pulling away for good from the Kuyas in the third quarter.

Muntinlupa shut down Bulacan in the first 20 minutes, limiting the visitor to just 23 points while forcing 15 turnovers.

The Cagers then went or a 31-point blast in the third quarter, and their lead eventually swelled to as high as 31 early in the fourth to the delight of their fans at home.

Chito Jaime collected 18 points, six rebounds, two assists, and one block for the now 14-9 Muntinlupa, which opened a half-game lead over Batangas City for second place in the South.

Dhon Reverente added a double-double of 14 rebounds and 12 points with five assists and two steals.

Jovit Dela Cruz made 13 markers, three boards, one steal, and three blocks for Bulacan, which fell to third straight loss at 13-11.

The team is now just up by one full game against Quezon City for the fifth seed in the Northern Division.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno