Alab Pilipinas were handed their second straight loss by the Saigon Heat, 74-79, in the elimination round of the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) at the CIS Arena in Vietnam late Sunday evening.
After being handed a 77-79 loss by defending champions Westports Malaysia Dragons, the Filipino squad was still unable to rekindle their winning ways in the clash with the Heat.
During the game, the Heat relied on a solid final period performance to finally seal the win against Alab and take a one win advantage in their preliminary round series.
Both teams were locked, 53-53, at the end of the first three quarters of play but the Vietnamese side stepped up their offense to overtake the Filipinos at the end of regulation.
American reinforcement James Hughes tried to spark an offensive surge for Alab midway through the fourth quarter with two consecutive shots to close the gap, 62-65, but the Filipinos were unable to capitalize on their momentum.
Lenny Daniel led Saigon in their victory over the Philippine side with a total of 24 points and 15 rebounds including two assists and two crucial blocks.
On the other hand, import Sampson Carter shouldered the load for Alab, cashing in 20 points and 11 boards while shooting guard Bobby Ray Parks Jr. chipped in 14 markers, eight boards and 6 assists.
The two clubs will once again meet for their final clash in the opening round of games in this year’s regional caging meet on March 3 at the home stadium of the Heat.