BINAN — The wins keep on coming for the Makati Super Crunch and on Monday, they were able to slay one of the big dogs in the MPBL Datu Cup – the San Juan Knights.
John Rey Vilanueva and Cedric Ablaza provided the 1-2 scoring punch for the Super Crunch, who also held the explosive Knights and came away with a tough 78-73 win at the Alonte Sports Arena here.
Villanueva knocked in 11 of his 21 points in the second period when the Super Crunch were able to gain early control.
Ablaza, on the other hand, drilled in nine of his 19 markers in the pivotal fourth at the height of the Knights’ rally.
But the Super Crunch’s defense on the Go-For-Gold-backed Knights, particularly on Mac Cardona and John Wilson, proved to be a big factor in notching their 11th straight win, currently the longest active streak so far in the tournament put up by Senator Manny Pacquiao with PBA legend and former MVP Kenneth Duremdes serving as commissioner.
Cardona was held scoreless the entire first half while Wilson went without a point in the first quarter, before exploding for 12 in the second quarter. But the former Ginebra player was also scoreless in the pivotal fourth, which proved to be a big factor in Makati’s win.
With the win, Makati moved up to solo second spot of the northern division. The Super Crunch actually carry the same win-loss record with the Manila Stars at 17-4, but Makati was able to beat the nation’s capital in the early goings of the elimination round.
“We’re not more concerned about the streak. The most important thing for us is we were able to beat one of the toughest teams in the tournament and moved up in the standings,” said Makati coach Cholo Villanueva. “I’m not concerned about peaking too early as well. I don’t think this team has peaked yet because we still have a lot of things to improve on.”
Following its latest loss, San Juan dropped to fourth spot in the northern division with a 17-5 record.