Blue Haus nearly played a perfect game, pushing the right buttons to open a big lead in the second quarter en route to the lopsided win. Blue Haus worked out a patient motion offense and when given a chance also went for fastbreak plays.
On defense, they clamped down on Mariana Resort’s big men, particularly the frustrated Jorge De Guzman, who was called for two offensive fouls trying to muscle his way into Blue Haus’ frontliners. Blue Haus also pressured Mariana Resort’s ball handlers, making it difficult for the latter to set up its offense.
Blue Haus’ defense was so unforgiving that Mariana Resort failed to score a single field goal in the entire second quarter and for about 14 minutes since the first period. Mariana Resort was still pretty much in the game after Jessie Stole canned a triple, cutting Blue Haus’ lead to 3, 13-16, going into the final minute of the first frame.
Neither team scored in the remaining minute of the first quarter. Junar Guiab, however, started the second quarter with an and-1 play and Blue Haus went on to launch an 11-0 run to build a 27-13 spread.
Mariana Resort ended the protracted dry spell at the 4:16 mark of the second period off Joseph Galulu’s pair of free throws. The third free throw came from Stole in the last few seconds of the first half, which ended with Blue Haus enjoying a 36-16 lead.
After a disastrous showing in the second quarter, Stole tried to pump up his teammates with some pep talk as they headed out of the playing court without Ed Cosino, who was held scoreless in the first half with Blue Haus players ganging up on him.
When the game resumed, Mariana Resort’s erratic plays continued. They turned the ball over several times, had two players fighting for the rebound on a few occasion, and their big men walked back on defense, while Blue Haus frontliners sprinted to the frontcourt. On offense, Mariana Resort was forced to take outside shots and rarely had a chance for a second crack at the basket.
On the other hand, Blue Haus continued its impressive game, moving the ball well and drawing contributions from every player it fielded in the match. Blue Haus had everything going on its side and at one point with the 24-second shot clock winding down, Felix Palacios was able to beat the clock with a jumper and a Mariana Resort defender was also called for a foul trying to fight a screen Guiab provided for Palacios.
Guiab made the bonus shot and scored 3 more points to wrap up the third and give Blue Haus a commanding 58-26 lead.
Blue Haus more than doubled Mariana Resort’s output, as the latter only got the elusive first field goal at the 6:58 mark of the third off Galulu’s layup from the former’s error in the inbound play and was limited to three more field goals late in the quarter.
With Blue Haus on top by 32 points, it was all over but the final score in the fourth quarter, as Mariana Resort still could not get its act together in the last frame. Mariana Resort played the fourth period without two key players, Elmer Pineda and Stole, who was injured and thrown out, respectively. Pineda hurt his knee while driving against two Blue Haus players early in the third, while Stole was slapped with two technical fouls late in the quarter for a verbal tussle with the officials and Blue Haus players after his teammate Jun Alipio was held down by Sam Fernandez in the rebound play.
Stole left the game with 6 points, all of them came in the first period, while Alipio was the lone double-figure scorer for the hapless Mariana Resort with his 10. De Guzman, who averaged 23.5 points in their previous two games, was held to 6 points and made only two field goals.
Guiab led all scorers in the one-sided finale, firing 20, while Tony Diaz and Edsel Mendoza contributed 13 and 11, respectively. Six other Blue Haus players made it to the board.
Meanwhile, PIC Chefs won the battle for the third place after notching a 91-79 victory over Armatech.
Blue Haus 71 – Guiab 20, Diaz 13, Mendoza 11, Berline 8, Pangelinan 5, Palacios 4, Santos 3, Moises 4, Factor 2.
Mariana Resort 42 – Alipio 10, Galulu 8, De Guzman 6, Stole 6, Sabino 4, Cosino 2, Pineda 2, de la Torre 2.
Scoring by quarters: 16-13, 36-16, 58-26, 71-41.