February 12, 2018

Robbie Manalang tallies conference-high 40 points as AMA barges into win column

Robbie Manalang tallied a conference-record 40 points and AMA Online Education finally barged into the win column on Monday with a 96-93 decision over Batangas-EAC in the PBA D-League Aspirants' Cup at the JCSGO gym in Cubao.

The Titans controlled the game early and never gave the Generals room to get into the groove.

If any, the breakthrough win was a sigh coach Mark Herrera, who had sleepless nights as the losses pile up.

Herrera said he added scorers to the team to address their lack offensive threat referring to new recruits Arvin Tolentino and Kyles Lao.

"Kumuha tayo ng scorers. Walang umiiskor bukod kay Robbie these last games eh. At least ngayon, may iba tayong option," he said.

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Manalang made 13 of 27 attempts, including 8 of 16 from 3-point range.

The Titans also got huge contribution from James Martinez (18 points), Genmar Bragais (17 points), and Rocky Antonares, who chalked up a double with 12 points and 12 rebounds to finally snap a three-game skid.

AMA opened a 26-8 advantage after one quarter as Antonares and Bragais hit their shots early on.

The Titans built their biggest advantage at 54-26 on a layup by Arvin Tolentino 19 seconds into the third quarter.

After struggling for three quarters, the Generals got their going in the fourth to make the game interesting but ran out of time.

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"Napagod na rin yung players dahil nababad masyado kaya nakahabol ang Batangas," said Herrera.

Cedric De Joya scored with 21 points, Cedric Ablaza registered a double-double of 17 markers and 12 boards, while Garcia had 15 points, four rebounds, and four assists ior Batangas-EAC, which fell to 0-4.

The Scores:

AMA ONLINE EDUCATION 96 -- Manalang 40, Martinez 18, Bragais 17, Antonares 12, Tolentino 6, Lao 3, Escalambre 0, Garcia 0, Jordan 0, Matillano 0, Porter 0.

BATANGAS-EAC 93 -- De Joya 21, Ablaza 17, Garcia 15, E. Mendoza 11, Diego 10, Laude 6, Bautista 4, Dela Pe?a 3, Maguliano 2, J. Mendoza 2, Tampoc 2, Martin 0, Neri 0.

Quarters: 26-8, 52-26, 71-58, 96-93.