By Jonas Terrado
(Sta. Rosa, Laguna)
8 p.m. – Alab Pilipinas vs Formosa
Renaldo Balkman scored 13 of his 36 points in the fourth quarter as San Miguel Alab Pilipinas overcame the stubborn CLS Knights, 80-73, Sunday night for its seventh consecutive win in the ASEAN Basketball League at the GOR Kertajaya in Surabaya, Indonesia.
The former PBA import made six of Alab’s first eight points in the final period to take the lead for good after CLS led 60-59 before conspiring with Justin Brownlee and Ray Parks Jr. to preserve the lead until the final buzzer.
Balkman made 16 of 28 shots, grabbed 10 rebounds and blocked three shots as Alab kept its hold on third spot with a 10-4 record.
That kept Alab within shouting distance of defending champion Hong Kong Eastern (10-2) and Chinese club Chong Son Kung Fu (9-2) while moving a game up of Thailand’s Mono Vampire (9-5) and 2 1/2 games over the Singapore Slingers (8-7).
Alab stayed unbeaten this month after posting wins over Singapore (82-69) and Mono (86-84). Coach Jimmy Alapag and company wraps up their February schedule on Sunday against Taiwanese club Formosa Dreamers in Sta. Rosa, Laguna.
Brownlee had 16 points despite a 5-of-14 shooting but fell short of a triple-double after adding 12 rebounds and nine assists while Parks continued his surge after an early-season struggle with 17 points, four rebounds and four assists.
Fil-American Lawrence Domingo had eight points, scoring a reverse layup off a backdoor cut that made it 76-70 for Alab with 4:17 left in the fourth. He also had 12 rebounds in 20 minutes off the bench.