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AJ Mandani, Slingers end Alab’s streak



Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times AJ Mandani, Slingers end Alab's streak ABL Alab Pilipinas Basketball News  Xavier Alexander Singapore Slingers Renaldo Balkman Neo Beng Siang Justin Brownlee Josh Urbiztondo Jimmy Alapag Chris Charles Bobby Ray Parks Jr. AJ Mandani 2017-18 ABL Season

It was déjà vu all over again for Alab Pilipinas

The Singapore Slingers continue to frustrate Tanduay Alab Pilipinas in the Filipinos’ home floor, stunning the hosts once more, 90-80, Wednesday evening at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.

With the win, Singapore regained the series lead, 2-1. The Slingers defeated Alab last November 29 in Laguna, 97-83 but the Tanduay-backed team was able to get one back last Sunday, 89-80 in Singapore. The two teams will face off one last time in the regular season on February 4 at the OCBC Arena.

The loss was made more painful because Alab’s three-game winning streak was snapped, dropping their slate to 3-4. Singapore, on the other hand, raised their record to 4-5.

Alab’s World Imports Renaldo Balkman and Justin Brownlee finished with double-doubles, with the former tallying 24 points and 12 rebounds to go along with five blocks, while the latter finished with 16 points and 11 boards. However, Brownlee shot just 7-for-19 from the field, missing all of his attempts from downtown.

Filipino-Canadian AJ Mandani proved pivotal for Singapore, especially in the final frame.

Mandani, together with World Imports Chris Charles and Xavier Alexander, connived to start the final frame. The troika went on an 11-2 run that turned a 64-all deadlock to a nine-point Singapore lead.

Josh Urbiztondo was able to bring life back to Alab by knocking down two triples, while a Bobby Ray Parks, Jr. basket sliced the lead down to six with 3:15 left.

However, controversy arose that drew the ire of Jimmy Alapag and the home crowd.

With two minutes remaining, Alexander’s three-point attempt was challenged by Brownlee, resulting in what seemed like a travelling violation. However, the referees did not blow the whistle. Making matters worse, Alexander knocked down a clutch jumper to end Alab’s run.

Frustrated Alapag was called for a technical. Alab could not regain their bearings afterwards as Singapore led by as much as 14 points, 90-76.

Mandani scored 11 of his 23 points of the bench, going 6-for-8 from downtown.

Reigning Local Most Valuable Player Parks had 16 points, five rebounds, four assists, one steal, and a block in the contest, while Josh Urbiztondo chipped in 12 markers.

Seven-foot-two Charles led all scorers with 29 points and had a game-high 15 rebounds. Alexander added 20 markers, nine boards, and nine assists for Singapore.

Alab looks to bounce back when it faces Mono Vampire on the road on Sunday.

The Scores:

Singapore 90 – Charles 29, Mandani 23, Alexander 20, Goh 6, Liew 5, Ng 3, Low 2, Lim 2, Folkoff 0, Oh 0, Tay 0

Pilipinas 80 – Balkman 24, Parks Jr. 16, Brownlee 16, Urbiztondo 12, Maierhofer 6, Raymundo 4, Celiz 2, Domingo 0, Hontiveros 0, Sumalinog 0, Alabanza 0

Quarterscores: 12-19, 42-38, 64-64, 90-80