Though the Blackwater Elite fell short of upending Meralco Bolts Friday night in their 2018 PBA Philippine Cup opener Friday night, their third overall pick in the 2017 PBA Rookie Draft, Raymar Jose, had quite a pro debut.
The product of the famed Far Eastern University program, who was fielded by coach Leo Isaac into the starting five, finished with 16 markers — eight in the opening frame alone — on 5-of-11 shooting alongside six rebounds. And Jose shared that he was ready this moment.
“Siguro nag-focus lang ako sa loob. Nung pinasok ako ni coach, ready lang ako sa mga pinapagawa niya, mga play namin,” said the six-foot-four bruiser moments after Blackwater’s 98-103 defeat at the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay.
The 25-year-old admitted that he was excited heading into the match not just because of the fact that he will finally fulfill his life-long dream, but also because he will now have the chance to rub elbows with the country’s best.
“Siyempre mga beterano na sila sa PBA,” said the Gilas Pilipinas member.
“Dati iniidolo ko lang sila, ngayon nakakalaban ko na.”
Speaking of veterans, Jose, a known workhorse, played like one in his debut. Based on his first game, his style of play is complementary with the Elite such as fellow Tamaraw Mac Belo and the resurgent Poy Erram.
Seeing the three together in Blackwater’s frontline brought wonders as their 22-6 run that wiped out Meralco’s 19-point deficit late in the game had the three on the floor at the same time.
Despite that, Jose insists that they still have to work more together.
“Hopefully sana ma-improve pa namin ang sarili namin as a team, magtrabaho pa kami. Kulang pa. Wala pa kaming pinapakita,” said the 25-year-old.
“Sana yung team namin, mas maging isa kami at ma-improve namin lahat.”
And more than the teamwork that has to be polished better, Jose also sees the need to adjust in the league’s style of play, even if he had shown flashes that he can play against much more seasoned cagers.
“Yung mga nakakalaban ko, beterano sila. Kailangan talaga mag-adjust ako. Bawal mag-relax. Konting ano lang, wala ka na kaya kailangan i-improve sarili ko,” said Jose.
“Hopefully next game namin maka-adjust na ako.”
GlobalPort thrashes tired Blackwater for second straight win
With their opponents playing their second game in three days, GlobalPort Batang Pier easily handled a tired Blackwater Elite side, 101-76, en route to their second straight victory, Friday night at the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay.
The Batang Pier, who had posted their second most lopsided win in franchise history, improved their card to 2-2, while the Elite lost their second straight match and had dropped to 2-3.
“We hit our target of 80 points below. They scored 76 points. We just played good defense all the way, and that’s the result,” said Batang Pier head coach Pido Jarencio. “Everybody contributed, even the rookies, that’s why we pulled away.”
Sean Anthony top-billed for GlobalPort with 22 points on six triples, on top of seven rebounds, five assists, and two steals. Stanley Pringle finished with 17 points and 11 boards with five dimes, while Kelly Nabong scored 16.
The one-sided affair in favor of the Batang Pier started as early as the opening frame, when Anthony’s three-pointer met the bottom of the net and gave them a 24-13 cushion with 3:21 left in the said quarter.
With almost everything going their way and Blackwater failing to find ways to respond, GlobalPort was able to lead by as much as 31 points, 87-56, after Pringle swished in a jumper with exactly 9:20 remaining in the final frame.
“Actually simple lang naman ang instruction ko sa team eh. Blackwater naglaro ng back-to-back, siyempre mapapagod din yan. So takbuhan,” added Jarencio on the win, where they scored 23 off fastbreaks.
Sophomore Mac Belo and Michael Di Gregorio were the only bright spots for Blackwater in the loss, as they scored 17 and 15 points, respectively, with the former adding seven rebounds and two assists to his name.
Poy Erram, who was remarkable in their last four games, was silent with eight points and seven rebounds. Raymar Jose added 12 boards and eight points for the Elite, who played without Allein Maliksi as he is currently in Australia.
Globalport will next face San Miguel Beermen on January 24, Wednesday at 7:00 PM, while Blackwater will take on Alaska on January 27, Saturday at 4:30 PM. Both games will be at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.
Globalport 101 – Anthony 22, Pringle 17, Nabong 16, Grey 8, Taha 7, Gabayni 6, Juico 6, Araña 4, Elorde 4, Flores 4, Guinto 4, Sargent 3.
Blackwater 76 – Belo 17, DiGregorio 15, Sena 9, Erram 8, Jose 8, Pinto 8, Palma 6, Javier 3, Cruz 2, Banal 0, Cortez 0, Marcelo 0, Neypes 0, Sumang 0.
Quarterscores: 28-23, 61-37, 79-54, 101-76.
Christian Standhardinger goes perfect from stripe in Hong Kong’s rout of Formosa
After going a horrid 5-for-17 from the stripe during their first loss of the season last January 9, Christian Standhardinger made sure to make good on his free throws to power the Hong Kong Eastern Basketball Club to a dominant 99-79 rout of the Formosa Dreamers, Thursday evening in Southorn Stadium.
The 6-foot-8 Filipino-German, who tallied 37 points and 19 rebounds in the overtime loss to Saigon, went a perfect 9-for-9 from the foul line. He finished with 25 points and 10 rebounds.
The contest itself was not close, as the defending champions were able to impose their will on the bottom-ranked squad, leading by as much as 23 points, 93-70, after two free throws by Standhardinger with 2:58 remaining.
If Standhardinger was having a good day with his free throws, the entire Formosa squad could not say the same, going 13-of-27 from the line.
Tyler Lamb had 25 markers as well for Hong Kong, while Marcus Elliott grabbed a triple-double with 19 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists.
Lenny Daniel paced Formosa with 25 points and 11 rebounds. World Import Ronnie Aguilar had 14 points and 16 rebounds but went just 5-for-14 from the field.
With the win, Hong Kong goes to 8-1, while the Dreamers fell to 1-8.
Chooks-to-Go President hopes 3×3 World Cup breaks Philippine Arena record
Last October 27, 2017, Game Seven of the PBA Governors’ Cup Finals between heated rivals Barangay Ginebra San Miguel and Meralco Bolts saw 54,083 people troop to the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan. The attendance broke all records for both the venue and the PBA.
Come June this year, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and Chooks-to-Go are hoping that the upcoming 2018 FIBA 3×3 World Cup will surpass that record.
“We look at 3×3 as our best hope, really, to get a medal in the Olympics. Kami naman sa Chooks, we are behind SBP realizing that dream. Kanina pinag-uusapan na, if we’re going to break the record in attendance,” said Bounty Agro Ventures Inc. president Ronald Mascariñas on Thursday afternoon during a press conference held at BGC High Street in Taguig.
“I think the question there is not if we’re going to break, but how many more times. Because FIBA should see how passionate the Filipinos are about basketball. That’s a given,” one of the patrons of Gilas Pilipinas added.
Besides the event itself, the local government of Bulacan has pledged to make the week of the tournament filled with activities to celebrate the Philippines’ 120th year of Independence.
For their part, Chooks-to-Go vowed to help out the SBP in organizing the event and in building the team.
“We are throwing our support not to improve on our finish, but we want to help SBP organize, to win the championship — not just to improve our ranking,” Mascariñas shared.
And the experience he and his company gained after backing the Pilipinas 3×3 team during last year’s tournament will only help.
“In past tournaments, we’ve lost some games na maninipis lang talaga,” he recalled about the team composed of Kobe Paras, Kiefer Ravena, Jeron Teng, and JR Quinahan that competed in Nantes, France.
“This time around, with five months to go, we need to organize and put in the best tAdvertisements
CJ Perez, Jaycee Marcelino in unison: D-League is a whole other level
After falling just two games short of copping Lyceum’s first-ever NCAA crown, the Pirates went to the PBA D-League to gain experience. However, in their first foray in the second league, the Lyceans realized that it was a whole different beast.
Going up against the veteran-laden Marinerong Pilipino Skippers, the Zark’s Burgers-backed squad suffered a slow start as they adjusted to the tougher calls of the league. The Jawbreakers were down by as much as 17 points early in the third frame, 37-54.
“Yung physicality hindi naman ako masyadong nagulat pero sa mental toughness, yung pagod ka na, tapos may babanggga pa sa ‘yo, ang iniisip ko kailangan mas maging tough,” admitted reigning NCAA Most Valuable Player CJ Perez.
“Nangangapa kami nung una lahat kasi first game namin ito, pati dito sa court na ‘to first game din namin,” added Jaycee Marcelino.
It served as a wake-up call. Adjusting on the fly, Perez and Marcelino rallied the Jawbreakers back — even fashioning multiple attempts to take over the contest late in the game. However, they fell short, 92-94.
“Binalik lang namin yung laro namin dati, pass the ball, hindi yung puro dribble, i-run lang namin yung plays,” shared Marcelino, as he and Perez combined to score 16 points in the final frame.
The 21-year-old Marcelino finished with a game-high 20 points on an efficient 7-of-9 shooting to go along with four rebounds, three assists, two steals, and a block. The 24-year-old Perez added 19 points, five assists, two steals, and a block.
With their first game in the bag, the duo — and the rest of the Jawbreakers — now have the experience under their belts. And they plan to put in the work to prove that they belong.
“Sa NC naman kasi puro ka-level namin kalaro namin, dito puro beterano ang naglalaro,” said Marcelino. “Hindi talaga namin masabi na yung ginawa namin sa NC magagawa din namin dito.
“Mageextra work pa kami para masustain namin kung ano kami sa Lyceum.”
“It’s a good experience. Ibang iba pala talaga yung laro ng D-League sa NCAA,” expressed Perez, who is a consensus top three pick for the upcoming PBA Rookie Draft.
“Sobrang grateful kami na nakalaro na rin kami sa D-League.”
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