By: Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
Despite the rough start, the Iloilo United Royals managed to climb back and steal the game from the Marikina Shoemasters, 70-55, in the 2019 MPBL Lakan Season.
Marikina’s physicality and pesky brand of defense were evident in the game as they held Iloilo to just 32 points at the half and 70 in total.
With the Shoemasters displaying tough defense, they managed to take the lead at the sixth minute mark of the final canto, 46-50 with momentum on their side.
It was at this point Iloilo drew Jay Javelosa from the bench to provide some spark for the Iloilo squad. The strategy proved right as Javelosa went surging with a put-back and a steal that shouldered a 6-point blitz run to help regain momentum.
Javelosa’s spark propelled Iloilo’s fast paced offense, as the grit and grind Marikina team was left trying to catch up with the running and gunning Royals.
Iloilo never looked with Richard Escoto and Samboy De Leon joining the party, extending the lead up to double digits.
Aaron Jeruta flirted with a triple-double with 11 points, 6 rebounds, and 8 assists, garnering best player of the game with his clutch ball handling and efficient passing.
Iloilo is now on a roll with consecutive wins, flaunting a 6-4 record.
Iloilo- De Leon 14, Escoto 13, Jeruta 11, Publico 7, Tamsi 5, Rodriguez 5
Marikina- Sazon 15, Rebugio 9, Pascual 8, Gonzales 6, Dysam 5