San Juan City, Pasig-Sta. Lucia and MTrans Batangas City downed their rivals Saturday to bolster their respective quarterfinal seedings in the FilBasket Subic Championship at the Subic gym.
The San Juan Knights pounced on the Nueva Ecija Bespren, 104-65; the Pasig-Sta. Lucia Realtors turned back AICC Manila, 78-74; and MTrans Batangas City scuttled the Davao Occidental Tigers-Cocolife, 101-96.
San Juan’s win forged a two-way tie on top with AICC Manila on identical 7-2 marks, while Pasig-Sta. Lucia and MTrans Batangas City arranged a four-way logjam for fourth place on 5-4 records along with Nueva Ecija and Burlington EOG Sports.
Davao Occidental, meanwhile, fell to solo third with 7-3.
The 11-team tournament will have the top 4 teams at the end of the round-robin eliminations earning twice-to-beat quarterfinal incentives against the next four squads.
Victories from San Juan, Pasig and MTrans improved their respective quotients needed at the end of the elims as 7A Primus (2-7), FSD Makati-Army (2-7) and Muntinlupa Defenders (0-9) are already out of contention.
Renato Ular finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds, while Orlan Omar contributed 17 points and seven assists as San Juan directed the tempo throughout and led by as many as 41 points, 104-63, in the last 1:17 of the game.
Rhenz Abando and JM Calma also added 11 and 10 points.
Meanwhile, a Jeckster Apinan steal led to a three-pointer from Tyron Chan to give Pasig-Sta. Lucia the 72-70 upperhand with 1:56 left.
Cedrick Ablaza followed it up with a layup to put enough cushion, 74-70, as the Realtors protected their lead for good.
Ablaza and Ryan Costelo led Pasig with 14 points apiece, while Rudy Lingganay and Chan chipped in 12 points each. Justin Arana took charge inside the paint by collaring 10 rebounds.
In the other game, Jeff Viernes and Chito Jaime erupted for 30 and 21 points for MTrans Batangas City while Fran Yu added 12 points and five boards.
MTrans leaned on a third-quarter assault by outscoring Davao Occidental, 27-17, to pull away from its 57-56 halftime lead to 84-73.