Robbie Manalang emerged as Pasig’s hero, nailing a game-winning three-pointer in the last minute, silencing the Caloocan crowd with a 65-61 win in Game 2 of the MPBL playoffs.
With Manalang on the helm, Pasig avenged their 71-69 loss in Game 1, forcing the series to reach three games to determine the champion of the 2023 MPBL North Division
The skillful guard led the way with a game-high 23 points, showcasing sharpshooting accuracy with his 4-of-7 three-pointers; he also had two assists and three steals. This outstanding performance led the resilient Pasig club to victory and escape elimination.
Kenny Roger Rocacurva added 16 points, eight rebounds, and three steals to help Manalang’s efforts, while Ryan Costelo put up eight points, three rebounds, three assists, and two steals.
This victory had Pasig coach Boyet Fernandez thanking the Almighty as they live to fight for another day. .
“Unang-una, nagpapasalamat ako sa Diyos na binigyan kami ng isa pang pagkakataon na lumaban sa third game. But I’d also like to thank my players for this win. They never gave up,” he expressed.
The setting is set for Game 3, which will be played next Friday at Batang Kankaloo’s home court. Expect another tough duel, similar to the first two games’ excitement.
While Caloocan won Game 1 on Gabby Espinas’ game-winning goal, Pasig responded in Game 2 by reversing the roles with a thrilling triumph of its own.
No team led by more than seven points in the game until Manalang nailed a clutch stepback trey in the final three minutes to give Pasig a 59-58 advantage in the fourth quarter.
Pierce Tyron Chan sank a free throw on the next possession, and Manalang added another critical jumper before Costelo iced it with a lay-up in the last 28 seconds at 64-58.
Even Espinas’ trey in the following possession was insignificant as Rey Anthony Peralta split from the line for the final count.
Next Game Schedule: Makati Coliseum
- Nueva Ecija vs. Pasay
- San Juan vs. Makati
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