Kuala Lumpur Aseel rules AsiaBasket at San Beda-Machateam’s expense


KUALA LUMPUR Aseel took down the San Beda-Machateam Red Lions, 83-72, to keep the Sportsclick AsiaBasket International Championship trophy on Malaysian soil in the final on Tuesday night at the MABA Stadium.

The Aseel bounced survived a lethargic first quarter to repeat over the Red Lions, who made an early statement with seven triples for a 32-10 lead at the end of the first quarter.

KL, however, picked up the pace as the Malaysian squad held the former National Collegiate Athletic Association champion to only 14 points in the second quarter and six in the third to take a 58-52 lead entering the fourth.

The Aseel threatened to pull away after opening the final quarter on a 10-2 run for a 68-54 lead with 7:23 to go.

The Red Lions mounted a comeback when coach Kris Reyes gave Jalen Robinson a momentary breather and cut the lead down to 70-63, with under five minutes left.

But Kuala Lumpur pulled away on a 10-2 run capped by dagger triples from Robinson and Louie Sangalang for an 80-65 cushion with 1:30 remaining.

Robinson led the Aseel with 31 points, 21 rebounds, four assists, and four steals, capping a dominating performance all tournament long worthy of the Most Valuable Player award.

The American import finished with averages of 28.3 points, 17.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 0.7 blocks a night.

Sangalang had a quiet 10 points in the final, but he made up for his offensive struggles with his tremendous defense on the Red Lions, initiating a block party with five rejections on top of eight rebounds and one steal.

Jacob Cortez, who was also named to the First Team, led San Beda-Machateam with 19 points on five triples, five rebounds, six assists and two steals.

Yukien Andrada and Damie Cuntapay added 14 points each with Andrada also grabbing 11 rebounds for a double-double.

Harimau Malaysia weathered a late comeback from College of Saint Benilde (CSB) to prevail, 93-84, in the battle for third place.

Ting Chun Hong, also named into the First Team, had 16 points, 11 rebounds, three assists, and two steals, while Maegen Mahadevan finished with 13 points and five rebounds.

Prince Carlos led CSB with 21 pointsand three rebounds, while Robi Nayve added 19 points, six rebounds, nine assists and four steals.

Miggy Corteza, the last member of the First Team, came up with 13 points and five rebounds off the bench.

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