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Thirdy Ravena nails 1st home win as San-En upends Niigata

B.League (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--San-En finally notched a home win with Thirdy Ravena, but the now surging squad still needed to hold off Albirex Niigata for an 85-81 squeaker in a B.League action on Saturday at the Toyohashi City General Gymnasium.

San-En failed to sustain a hot start that saw the team take a 30-17 lead after the first quarter, eventually letting Niigata chip into the lead and force multiple ties, the last at 81-all with 45 seconds left.

Kyle Hunt, however, saved the day for San-En with a putback off a Stevan Jelovac miss with 26 seconds remaining to give their team an 83-81 advantage.

Niigata went for the win outright in the next play, but Rosco Allen and Kei Igarashi misfired in their three-point attempts and Jelovac sealed San-En's victory with two free throws.

Hunt finished with 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting, 13 rebounds, two blocks, and one steal for San-En, which won for the third straight time and is now at 5-17.

Jelovac added 13 points, 11 rebounds, and two assists.

In his best showing so far this season, Ravena ended up with 11 points, two rebounds, and one assist off the bench.

Jason Washburn converted 21 points on 10-of-16 shooting, nine rebounds, four assists, and one block for Niigata, which slipped to 6-16.

Meralco's resident PBA Governors' Cup import Allen Durham, who signed with Niigata following the cancellation of the PBA's season ending conference put up 14 points, nine rebounds, five assists, and one steal off the bench.

Both teams will face off again on Sunday.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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