New name, no problem.
San Miguel Alab Pilipinas may be sporting a new name but that didn’t stop their winning ways as they defeated the Singapore Slingers, 82-69, on Sunday at the OCBC Arena.
Renaldo Balkman led a well-balanced attack from Alab by tallying 21 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists. The American reinforcement also delivered the dagger triple with a minute remaining to secure the win for his team.
Josh Urbiztondo continued his hot-shooting by firing away 17 points and as a surprise, he also pulled down 8 rebounds. Justin Brownlee and Ray Parks each contributed 16 points apiece.
With the win over the Slingers, the Philippine squad are now winners of five straight ball games.
Alab was relentless in slowing down the Slingers, focusing their defensive effort on Xavier Alexander. The Slingers did receive 32 points and 7 rebounds from Alexander but didn’t get much from anybody else. Chris Charles was the only other Slinger who reached double-figures with 14 points.
As a team, Singapore shot slightly better than the Philippines at 43 percent but was only 3-for-12 from deep. They also turned the ball over 16 times which didn’t help the flow of their offense.
It was a 28-17 third quarter that helped Alab gain momentum. Continuous baskets by Urbiztondo, Parks, and Balkman gave Alab a lead as high as 15 points.
Singapore tried to fight back in the final period but Alab’s balanced scoring attack proved to be too much. Balkman quenched the Slingers’ endgame rally by burying a gutsy three-pointer with 59 seconds remaining to push his team’s lead back to double-digits.
Alab recently partnered with San Miguel Corporation last week, giving them their new name. San Miguel of course is no stranger to the ABL having supported the San Miguel Beermen in the 2012 and 2013 seasons.