Defensive gem keys Tigers’ Recreation 1 nipping of Knights

SUBIC—Billy Robles foiled a drive by Mike Ayonayon on the crunch because the Davao Occidental Tigers preserved a come-from-behind 77-75 additional time victory over the San Juan Knights on Wednesday night time to take a 1-0 lead of their Chooks-to-Go MPBL Nationwide Finals faceoff at Subic Bay Health club.

Mike Yee took cost of the offense for the Tigers with 5 factors within the additional interval as Davao Occidental accomplished a rally from as many as 11 factors down within the third interval to take psychological management of the best-of-five sequence.

With Davao forward, 76-75, Ayonayon, San Juan’s go-to-guy, elevated for an inside thrust just for the shot to be thwarted by Robles.

“We poured all of it to win,” stated Yee, totally recovered from an ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) damage he suffered earlier than the MPBL took a pressured break on account of COVID-19. He was named greatest participant after ending with 15 factors and eight rebounds.

Davao coach Don Dulay may solely heave a sigh of aid because the Tigers clawed their method again from a 57-65 deficit with solely 3:05 to go.

“It was a giant problem,” stated Dulay. “We by no means had a tune-up sport and we simply go exhausting on practices. But it surely nonetheless isn’t the identical. My crew got here able to play.”

Eman Calo additionally scored 15 factors for the Tigers whereas Robles had 9 factors and 11 rebounds.

Ayonayon, already an NLEX Highway Warrior who rejoined the Knights for the Finals, fired a game-high 27 factors.

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