The Tanduay Rhum Masters escaped an improving Blustar Detergent Dragons to score a pulsating 105-102 overtime win.
Gelo Alolino topped the Rhum Masters with 25 points, six assists, and four rebounds, while JP Belencion added 20 markers and four rebounds to put their tram at joint third place with Racal (4-2).
“Siguro tumatagal na rin sila dito and kita naman sa last few games, dumidikit na rin yung mga resulta nila,” said coach Lawrence Chongson. “Iba pa rin yung nakaka-adapt na rin sila.”
Tanduay had a hard time disposing Blustar this time out, compared to its 94-71 victory over the Dragons last June 13.
Alolino pushed his side, 90-87 with 3.9 seconds left, before Juami Tiongson drained a runner three at the buzzer to force the extra period.
The former National University Bulldog once again struck in overtime, giving Tanduay a 98-95 edge which would balloon to seven, 102-95 in the final minute courtesy of a pair of freebies from Louie Vigil.
But Blustar resisted going down without a fight, as Liaw Chee Huei and Tiongson kept the Malaysians in the running, with the latter drilling a fastbreak three to cut the deficit to just two, 102-100 with 23.4 ticks remaining.
Jeff Javillonar would split his freebies on the other end, and come up with a huge block on Wong Yi Hou’s game-tying trey as Tanduay escaped with the win.
“Sana yung mga ganitong klaseng games, makapulot kami ng mga aral,” said Chongson.
Ivan Yeo topped Blustar (1-6) with a huge double-double of 27 points and 22 rebounds, while Tiongson had 18 markers, six assists, and five boards in the close defeat.
Tanduay (105) – Alolino 25, Belencion 20, Javillonar 9, Santos 8, Tagarda 8, Vigil 8, Celda 7, Lingganay 7, Acibar 4, Acuna 3, Enguio 2, Gotladera 2, Mendoza 2.
Blustar (102) – Yeo 27, Tiongson 18, Kuek 16, Choo 12, Ma 12, Wong 11, Ong 4, Liaw 2, Palma 0, Ting 0.
Quarterscores: 17-19, 44-41, 70-69, 90-90, 105-102.