By Jerome Lagunzad
(Ynares Sports Arena)
1 p.m. – Marinerong Pilipino vs AMA
3 p.m. – Racal Motors vs Tanduay
5 p.m. – Batangas vs Gamboa Coffee Mix
Resurgent Marinerong Pilipino and Batangas take on separate foes today, both determined to clinch quarterfinal tickets in the 2017 PBA D-League Foundation Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Riding the crest of a four-game winning streak that put them back in playoff contention, the Skippers intend to sustain their big roll against the eliminated AMA Titans in their 1 p.m. encounter that pulls down the curtains in a rare triple-header offering.
“Miracles still happen and I hope we pull off another one,” said Marinerong Pilipino veteran coach Koy Banal, who will pin his hopes anew on ageless big man Mark Isip, gunner Joseph Marata and guard Paolo Javelona.
Batangas, fresh from a 95-90 victory over Racal Motors last week, is hoping to do the same against also-ran Gamboa Coffee Mix in the main match set at 5 o’clock.
But Batangueños coach Eric Gonzales is reminding his wards not to take the Coffee Lovers lightly.
“‘Yung makakalaban namin is very experienced and if they play with pride, any given time, kaya nilang manalo.
Hopefully, we already learned our lessons and take it as our motivation going forward,” he said.
Meanwhile, Tanduay coach Lawrence Chongson intends to cover all the bases when the quarterfinals-bound Rhum Masters tangle with the underperforming Racal Alibaba at 3 p.m.
“Parang tuneup na ito sa amin, for the players to stay sharp na rin. ‘Yun ang gusto kong mangyari sa amin papunta ng playoffs,” he said.