Jhan McHale Nermal of Bacolod BingoPlus drives to the basket for a layup while Dhon Reverente of the GenSan Warriors tries to catch up with him. MPBL PHOTO
MANILA – With an 81-77 victory over the GenSan Warriors in Game 1 of the Southern Division quarterfinals on Monday in Zamboanga City, Bacolod BingoPlus came closer to advancing to the next stage of the 2022 Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League playoffs.
Jhan McHale Nermal, a forward for the Negrense, was awarded the title of Player of the Game after he recorded a double-double for the Bacolodnons by scoring 20 points and grabbing 11 rebounds. He also stole four balls.
Alwyn Alday contributed 20 points, including two triples, to the team’s total. Aaron Jeruta and Jeramer Cabanag scored 12 and 11 points, respectively, for BingoPlus, and Mark Yee contributed a double-double by scoring 10 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.
Bacolod got off to a strong start by jumping out to a 12-3 lead thanks to early conversions from Nermal and Jeruta. After a valiant comeback by GenSan, which had them as close as 10-12, the Bacolodons countered with shots from Cabanag to take a 17-10 lead.
The Warriors got off to a terrific start in the second period, and as a result, they took the lead, 21-20. Bacolod regained the lead for a short period of time, but GenSan responded with another scoring run to take a 34-31 advantage into the halftime break.
After an Elvin Chan three, GenSan went on to reach their highest lead of the game at 37-31, but Bacolod turned things around with inside conversions by Nermal and Jeruta and triples by Alday and Yee to take a 57-43 advantage.
The Warriors responded with their own rally bridging the third and fourth quarters, cutting Bacolod’s advantage to 67-70 midway through the fourth quarter following a triple by Nico Elorde. This brought the Warriors within striking distance of tying the game.
However, Alday, Nermal, and Yee scored consecutive baskets to give Bacolod an 81-73 lead, and free throws made by Nermal and Joel Lee Yu extended that lead to 83-73 before GenSan scored two late baskets to account for the final margin.
The Warriors were led in scoring by Christopher Macaslang, who finished with 13 points, five rebounds, three steals, and two assists; Elorde and Christian Fajarito both scored 12 points, and Brian Hilario contributed 10 points.
When the Bacolod BingoPlus faces up against the Warriors once more at nine o’clock in the evening on October 24 at the General Santos Gymnasium, they will have the opportunity to finish out the best-of-three quarterfinals series.
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