San Miguel Alab Pilipinas scored a bounce-back win as they took down the Macau Black Bears, 106-99, Friday night at the Filoil-Fying V Center in San Juan, Manila.
Led by the amazing performance of Renaldo Balkman who had 37 points on 14 of 19 shooting from the field, Alab overcame a hot three-point shooting night for the Black Bears who have now suffered their third straight defeat. Their skid started against the red-hot Knights then continued with a loss to Hong Kong Eastern. Luckily for Macau, they’ll be heading home this Sunday against the bottom-dwelling Wolf Warriors who only have a single win in 12 games.
It was a tight ball game until late in the fourth quarter when Alab went on a mini-run to take complete control of the game. With Lui Zihao nailing a triple to trim Alab’s lead down to five points, 96-91, the home team scored 10 unanswered points to put the game away.
Balkman led the attack with a layup, which was quickly followed by a triple from Ethan Alvano. The Black Bears’ bench was then called for a technical foul with Ray Parks converting. Back-to-back dunks from Caelan Tiongson and Balkman followed by technical free throw for a 106-91 lead, turning the close game into a blowout.
PJ Ramos had another double-double for Alab with 21 points and 14 rebounds while playmakers Parks and Alvano combined for 20 points and 20 assists. Lawrence Domingo led the charge for Alab’s bench with 13 points on a perfect 6 of 6 shooting from the field.
Macau got big games from their three imports led by Ryan Watkins with 24 points and 15 rebounds. Anthony Tucker also had a double-double with 22 points and 10 assists, while Mike McKinney finished with 18 markers. Aside from the three, the Black Bears had two other double-digit scorers as Nathan Yu scattered 20 points and Liu adding 12.
Led by Yu’s six conversions, Macau had 18 three-point shots in the game compared to only six makes for the home team. However, Alab made up for this deficit by dominating the shaded area with a 70 to 24 advantage in points in the paint.
Alab stays on top of the team standings with seven wins against two defeats while Macau falls to the seventh spot with six wins against five losses. The defending champion returns to action on Sunday as they welcome the desperate Mono Vampire.