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Microl-Toyota slips past Aqua, 90-89 - Jul 23, 2006

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MICROL-Toyota snapped Aqua Resort Club’s winning run after pulling off a 90-89 victory last Thursday in the 6th Mobil Oil Marianas Co-ed Invitational Basketball League at the Gilbert C. Ada Gym.
The win put Toyota in a tie for second place with Aqua, which absorbed its first loss in five games. McDonald’s is the only undefeated squad in the nine-team field with a 3-0 record.
James Abuy drilled crucial 3-pointers in the fourth quarter, Joelan Mendoza canned important free throws and center Marlon De Dios made one big defensive stop to give Toyota its fourth win in a row.
With Toyota down by three, 74-71, going into the last three minutes of the match, Abuy buried back-to-back triples to steal the lead, 77-74, going into the last two minutes of the match.
Toyota hung on to the lead with Mendoza scoring on two free layups and shooting 3-of-4 from the 15-foot line, 86-84, with less than a minute left in the game.
A baseline jumper from Abuy gave Toyota more distance, 88-84, with 52 seconds remaining on the clock.
Aqua quickly inbounded the ball and Toyota had a defensive lapse, when the latter allowed Mark Cecilia an easy layup in the middle moving the former within two, 88-86, with 48 seconds left in the game.
Abuy missed on Toyota’s next offensive set giving Aqua a chance to tie or win the game.
Aqua sued for time to set up a play, but Eric Dalangin failed to deliver. The Aqua forward drove to the basket against De Dios, who stood his ground in the paint raising both arms to block the shot. De Dios failed to swat the ball, but his presence was enough to intimidate Dalangin, who lost the ball on the baseline, with 34 seconds left in the game.
After a big stop, De Dios with the 24-seconds shotclock winding down, drove to the left baseline and nailed a reversed layup giving Microl a 90-86 lead, with 11 seconds left in the match.
Aqua pushed the ball and Dalangin spotted Cecilia on the right baseline. Cecilia received the pass and tried for a 3-pointer and missed. But he was given two free throws, as Abuy was called for a technical foul for unsportsmanlike conduct after shouting and distracting the Aqua guard when he attempted the 3-pointer.
Cecilia muffed the first charity and drilled the second one to move Aqua within three, 90-87.
Toyota inbounded the ball from the baseline and Dalangin stole the possession and connected on a jumper to cut the lead to one, 90-89. But Aqua ran out of time as there was only .06 remaining on the clock and Toyota had possession.
Connie Camacho topscored for Toyota with 25 points, while Abuy contributed 20. Kevin Cequean chipped in 16.
Dalewin Cortez paced Aqua with 30 points, but was held to only four points in the fourth period as he had limited touches on the ball in the payoff quarter. Dalangin added 19, while Barbo had 15 markers.
In the second game, defending champion Fiesta Resort easily cruised to its fourth win in six games after whipping Saipan Ice, 120-84.

First Game

Microl-Toyota 90—Camacho 25, Abuy 20, Cequean 16, Cecilia 11, Mendoza 7, De Dios 6, Catalla 5.
Aqua 89—Cortez 30, Dalangin 19, Barbo 15, Ruluked 5, Domingo 4, Bojocan 4, Johanes 4, Cecilia 3, Velez 2.
Quarterscores: 26-21, 40-46, 67-64, 90-89

Second Game
Fiesta 120—Mariko 20, Esdrelon 16, Alipala 15, Macoto 14, Jinang 14, Seman 11, Carino 6, Calag 6, Opone 4, Alegre 2.
Saipan Ice 84—Pambid 32, Dela Torres 23, Mariano 19, Abadilla 9.
Quarterscores: 28-18, 51-32, 83-52, 120-84
(Courtesy of Variety News)

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