RNV capitalized on a shorthanded Team CNMI crew and nipped them, 76-75, while Rampage bounced back from last week’s loss by beating SMA Flyers, 64-54, as action in the Island-wide Men’s Bud Light Basketball League continued last Monday at the Tinian Multi-Purpose Gymnasium.
The opener was an up-and-down affair with RNV taking full advantage of a Team CNMI crew that has been decimated by player suspensions, injury, or simply players not suiting up due to work.
RNV raced to a 23-15 lead after one quarter of play and then held a 39-34 spread at the half thanks in large part to the offensive prowess of Red Borca.
Team CNMI rallied in the third led by Louise Maligson and Dennis Borja as they managed to outscore RNV, 27-17, in the quarter to take a 61-56 spread into the payoff period.
RNV, however, survived Team CNMI’s uprising in the final 10 minutes of the contest as the latter’s remaining five players began to feel the effects of fatigue. Borca also went berserk again in the fourth quarter to preserve RNV’s matchstick win.
Borca led RNV’s balanced attack with 18 points, while Jhello Bungabong and Felipe Laoyon added 13 markers apiece for the now 5-8 team. Team CNMI, which dropped to 4-9, was led by the 30 points of Maligson and 24 of Borja.
Like the first game, the second game between Rampage and SMA was also nip and tuck. SMA took an early 14-9 lead in the first quarter, but Rampage took the advantage back, leading 27-25 at the half.
SMA again took the upper hand after three quarters of play, 61-56, as Christopher Opando and Tanley Villagracia combined for 11 points. But Leo Pascua had other plans as the long-distance marksman fired four triples in the fourth to lead a late-game Rampage breakaway.
Rampage, which improved to 10-3 in a tie with second-placer Devil Dog Warriors, was led by the 26 points of Pascua, while Jayron Epity added 21. Jason Doria was the high-point man for the now 3-9 SMA.
RNV 76 – Borca 18, Laoyon 13, Bungabong 13, Ubaundo 12, Rizardo 7, Alagos 5, Albano 4, Sañosa 2, Tortor 2, Bacuyag 2.
Team CNMI 75 – Maligson 30, D. Borja 24, Lizama 12, E. Borja 7, Rutor 1, Manansala 1.
Scoring by quarters: 23-15, 39-35, 56-61, 76-75.
Rampage 64 – Pascua 26, J. Epity 21, Cepeda 11, E. Epity 4, Joanes 2.
SMA 54 – Jas. Doria 19, Opanda 10, Jan. Doria 10, Villagracia 7, Fletcher 4, Cajilla 2, Lagunay 2.
Scoring by quarters: 9-14, 27-25, 38-42, 64-54.