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Cawaling makes sure Nueva Ecija-MiGuard wins in MPBL debut; Viernes protects Batangas-Tanduay homecourt

JR Cawaling made sure that the debuting Nueva Ecija-MiGuard Rice Makers would steal the thunder of host team Batangas City-Tanduay Athletics in the latter’s first home game in the 2019 MPBL Lakandula Cup.

The product of FEU cleaned up a miss by Marlon Monte with two seconds left to lift Nueva Ecija to a thrilling 78-76 win over the Marikina Shoemasters, Saturday evening at the Batangas City Coliseum.

Cawaling, who came off the bench, had 11 points, four rebounds, and two assists.

Nueva Ecija led by as much 10 points in the game but trailed by four, 76-72, with 1:21 left after a five-point spurt by Yves Sazon.

Sazon had 15 points in the game while Justine Padua had 15 markers as well.

Monte scored four straight points to tie the game with less than 30 seconds left to set-up Cawaling’s heroics.

Monte had a game-high 19 points while Jerwin Gaco held the fort for Nueva Ecija with 17 points, nine rebounds, five assists, and a block.

Jondan Salvador gobbled 14 rebounds to go along with eight points for Marikina.

In the main game, Jeff Viernes took over late for 2018 Raja Cup champion Batangas, torching the Muntinlupa Cagers late to take a 79-70 home win.

Viernes scored 25 points in the game, including nine of the last 13 points of Batangas to leave Muntinlupa in the dust.

Justin Melano complemented Viernes with 16 points while Val Acuna and Adi Santos had 10 points and 14 rebounds, respectively.

GJ Ylangan paced Muntinlupa with 18 points on an efficient 7-of-9 clip from the field. Jamil Ortuoste added 15 markers.

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The Scores:

First Game:

Nueva Ecija 78 – Monte 19, Gaco 17, Celada 12, Cawaling 11, Sarao 6, Gozum 6, Aquino 5, Dela Cruz 2, Guiyab 0, Reyes 0, Acibar 0, Singson 0, Chua 0.

Marikina 76 – Padua 15, Sazon 15, Rebugio 11, Tambeling 9, Medenilla 8, Salvador 8, Espanola 4, Gonzales 4, Dela Pena 2, Caldozo 0, Pascual 0.

Quarterscores: 16-12, 34-28, 51-57, 78-76.

Second Game:

Batangas 79 – Viernes 25, Melano 16, Acuna 13, Bragais 10, Santos 8, Eguilos 3, Olayon 2, Mescallado 1, Tolentino 1, Grimaldo 0, Villamor 0.

Muntinlupa 70 – Ylagan 18, Ortuoste 15, Enguio 9, Villanueva 6, De Leon 6, Koga 5, Moralde 5, Basibas 4, Justiniani 2, Salaveria 0, Maconocido 0, Mag-isa 0, Garcia 0.

Quarterscores: 15-16, 34-33, 57-57, 79-70.

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