Islander Rent-A-Car improved to 6-2 in the win-loss column after a thrilling 78-73 win over GSM Hoopaholics in the open division of the United Filipino Organization IT&E 2019 Basketball League last Sunday at the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium.
Ken Viray was like a man possessed for Islander Rent-A-Car, scoring 10 of his game-high 24 points in the fourth quarter to tow Islander Rent-A-Car to victory.
For all intents and purposes, Viray finished what he started as the whippet-quick guard kept Islander Rent-A-Car afloat in the first quarter. With him unloading 8 points in the quarter, he kept Hoopaholics at arm’s length facing only a 15-23 deficit after 10 minutes of platy.
Elgene Mangali took over the cudgels for Islander Rent-A-Car in the second, as the sweet-shooting swingman got hot from 3-point country en route to scoring 11 points in the quarter. As a result, his team successfully gnawed on Hoopaholics’ lead, which stood at a mere 3 points, 42-39, at the midway point of the game.
Mel Manibusan was tough inside for Hoopaholics in the third as the beefy center muscled his way for 6 of his 16 total points. His team continued to stave off Viray and company and Hoopaholics was still ahead, 57-54, with time down to 10 minutes in the ballgame.
Both teams would fight tooth and nail in the payoff period with the score tied on several occasions. Viray and Alex Standish, however, made crucial baskets in the homestretch to lead Islander Rent-A-Car to the 5-point victory.
Viray was named best player of the game for his game-long brilliance, while Mangali pumped in 18 markers in support. Shane Deleon Guerrero led four Hoopaholics players in double figures with 21 points in defeat, which equaled the team’s record to 4-4.
Earlier in the afternoon, AK Toyota survived a low-scoring game against winless Pacific Islands Club Saipan, 64-54, also in the open division.
Chris Liles scored nearly half of AK Toyota’s total output to lead the team to only its second win in eight matches. After scoring 4 points in the first quarter, the high-flying forward exploded for 12 in the second before adding 6 in the third. He capped his heroics with 9 in the fourth quarter.
He wound up with 31 to earn player of the game honors. Don Brennan was the only double-figure scorer for AK Toyota with 18 points. Pacific Islands Club, which dropped to 0-7, was paced by the 24 markers of gunslinger James Abuy, while Dan Mateo and Butch Sublemente added 13 and 12, respectively.
The second game of the Sunday schedule was won by Gilas Batang after Saipan Vegas didn’t have enough players. The default win raised Gilas Batang’s record to 3-5, while Saipan Vegas dropped to 2-5.
Saturday’s second match between open league-leader Blue Eagles A+ Consultant and Saipan Vegas also resulted in the default for the latter. The win was the seventh against no defeat for Blue Eagles, while loss was eighth in nine tries for Saipan Vegas.
AK Toyota 66 – Lilles 31, Brennan 18, Guilas 6, Coldeen 6, Seekol 3, Jones 2.
Pacific Islands Club 54 – Abuy 24, Mateo 13, Sublemente 12, Castillo 2, Bartolo 2.
Scoring by quarters: 12-10, 35-17, 54-40, 64-54.
Islander Rent-A-Car 78 – Viray 24, Mangali 18, Kapua 7, Quan 6, Torres 4, Standish 4, Ritual 2.
GSM Hoopaholics 73 – Deleon Guerrero 21, Manibusan 16, Lauron 11, Aughenbaugh 11, Babauta 5, Fitial 5, Tenorio 3, Mendez 2.
Scoring by quarters: 15-23, 42-39, 54-57, 78-73.