A CHARACTER win.
That’s how head coach Don Dulay of Davao Occidental summed up the Tigers’ latest win over the Laguna Heroes-Krah on Saturday night at the Marist School Gymnasium.
Ex-pro Leo Najorda finished with 25 points, including two crucial triples that helped the Tigers to a come from behind 72-66 triumph over the Heroes.
“That’s character,” Dulay told FOX Sports Philippines. “I was about to give up on my first group. I told my second group that if ever we’re going to lose, we’re gonna be there fighting.”
A member of PBA champion squads Red Bull and San Mig Coffee, Najorda scored five of the Cocolife-backed Tigers’ last seven points. His go-ahead jumper in the last 22 seconds put Davao Occidental on the driver’s seat, 67-66.
In the next play, Davao Occidental came up with a big stop and orced Denok Miranda to miss a jumper. Najorda snared the rebound and was fouled in the process by Michael Mabulac. He split his charities, then added two more free throws after another unproductive thrust by the Heroes.
Davao Occidental extended its winning streak to six games and improved its win-loss record to 8-3 for solo second spot in the southern division of the standings.
It was a huge win for the Tigers, who fought their way back from 22 points down in the early part of the third period.
Laguna saw its four-game winning streak snapped and suffered its fifth loss in 11 games.