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Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte / Facebook MayorJoyBelmonte

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Pasig Sta Lucia Realtors def, Soccsksargen Marlins-Armor / Facebook MPBL

Pasig Pirates dominate SOCCSKSARGEN Marlins for fourth-straight win

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Jeric Teng led the Pasig Sta. Lucia Pirates in taking control of the game early and steadied the ship in the fourth quarter to beat the SOCCSKSARGEN Marlins, 89-77, on Friday in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Cup at the Pasig Sports Complex.

Teng started things off for the home team with a three-pointer and Norman Gonzales replied with a layup for the visiting squad. Jeric Serrano and Richard Velchez then scored on a layup each, before Robbie Manalang hit a trey to give the Pirates a 10-2 lead.

Pasig took an 18-9 lead at the end of the first canto and was up 20-10 early in the second before Wilson Bartolome, Kiko Adriano, and Josan Nimes, combined in an 8-0 blast to up the lead to 18, 28-10. Jerome Juanico stopped the bleeding for the Marlins with a jumper, but Teng and Serrano had a layup each as the Pirates posted a 32-12 lead with 4:48 left in the first half.

Pasig brought a 41-20 lead into the second half and looked just about to coast to victory when JP Rabe Jake Diwa, Ryan Regalado, and Miko Estrellante teamed up to pull the Marlins to within 48-59 lead heading into the final canto.

Manalang, however, started off the fourth with back-to-back trey and Diwa and Argel Mendoza exchanged three-pointers. Serrano’s split from the line made it a 69-51 ball game with 8:00 still to go. That separation, however, proved to be enough even though Julio Magbanua, Exi Biteng, Juanico, Rabe, Diwa, and Estrallante sparked a late SOCCSKSARGEN run to cut the lead to 12 at the end of the game.

Teng finished with 25 points, eight rebounds, three assists, and two steals to lead the Pirates while Nimes added 19 points, six assists, and two steals. Manalang added 15 points, two boards, six dimes, and four steals while Serrano chipped in 11 markers and 12 boards.

Diwa top-scored for the Marlins with 24 points along with 11 rebounds, two assists, four steals, and one block while Rabe and Juanico had 13 and 11 points, respectively.

With the win, Pasig now holds a 5-2 win-loss card, winning their last four games. SOCCSKSARGEN, meanwhile, is yet to win in six outings. The Pirates will gun for their fifth-straight win on August 10 against the Parañaque Patriots in their fourth consecutive home game. The Marlins, meanwhile, will look for their first taste of victory on August 7 against the Zamboanga Family’s Brand Sardines.

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