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Dominant start lifts Pampanga past Batang Kankaloo in MPBL North semis opener

Balti Baltazar had a dominating performance to lead the Giant Lanterns anew. MPBL
By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga--Pampanga banked on an early dominance to clobber Batang Kankaloo, 74-63, in Game 1 of their MPBL North Division Semifinals on Friday night at the Bren Z. Guiao Convention Center.

With a sold-out home crowd cheering for them, the Giant Lanterns quickly pounced on Batang Kankaloo and opened a 24-11 lead at the end of the first quarter.

Pampanga's domination continued until early in the fourth quarter when the team established its largest lead at 29 points, 70-41.

Interestingly enough, Batang Kankaloo finished the game strong and outscored the Lanterns, 22-4, to trim the margin to a more respectable one in the end.

Balti Baltazar led Pampanga with 17 points, 14 rebounds, three rebounds, one block, and three steals.

Louie Sangalang and Encho Serrano each added nine markers off the bench with Sangalang going 3-for-3 from the field including 2-of-2 from beyond the arc.

Paul Sanga hit 17 points on four triples, one rebound, and one assist for Batang Kankaloo.

Game 2 is set for next Friday at the Nueva Ecija Coliseum in Palayan.

Follow him on X: @IvanSaldajeno

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