PHILIPPINE Sports Performance sends a strong message and Marinerong Pilipino- San Beda got it loud and clear.
The new kid on the block debuted in style, stunning the Red Lions with a come-from-behind win, 94-92, in the opener of the 2023 PBA D-League Aspirants' Cup Thursday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
PSP climbed back from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter and turn the game around on Ian Jay Yutuc's go-ahead triple in the waning seconds.
Yutuc's trey cap a searing 19-8 rally and shove the Gymers ahead to stay in the last 32 seconds in the payoff period.
"Sobrang saya kasi galing kami ng PSL (Pilipinas Super League) and we had a bad record there. Kabubuo pa lang ng team at nagbi-build pa lang kami ng chemistry and good thing, panalo sa first game. Team effort lang talaga," said PSP coach John Paolo Lao.
Four players finished in double digits for the Gymers led by Jayvee Dela Cruz's 26 points built around seven triples. Dariel James Bayla chipped in 17 while Yutuc added 16 and former pro Val Acu?a contributed 15.
Dela Cruz added five rebounds, six assists and three steals to quarterback PSPs offense. The Gymers also got ample coaching lift from PBA stars Jericho Cruz (SMB), CJ Perez (SMB) and Jackson Corpuz (Magnolia), who served as Lao's assistants.
Yukien Andrada fired 19 points, Jacob Cortez had 15 while Clifford Jopia collared 15 points, 16 rebounds and five blocks for the Red Lions.
San Beda, parading a young squad following the departure of its key players, controlled the majority of the match and led by as much as 12 points until PSP picked up its rhythm and turned the game around. (JBU)
Philippine Sports Performance 94 - Dela Cruz 26, Bayla 17, Yutuc 16, Acu?a 15, Velchez 8, Gabriel 5, Olegario 4, Dino 3, Soriano 0, Cesista 0, Mohammad 0, Castillo 0.
Marinerong Pilipino-San Beda 92 - Andrada 19, Jopia 15, Cortez 15, Cuntapay 9, Payosing 8, Cometa 8, Gallego 8, Alfaro 6, Puno 2, Visser 2, Jalbuena 0, Tagala 0, LLarena 0, Royo 0.
Quarterscores: 27-30, 43-50, 64-72, 94-92.