Pasig City relied on one late scoring outburst to put away Imus Bandera, 63-55, on Monday in the OKbet-MPBL (Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League) 4th Season presented by Xtreme at the Muntinlupa Sports Complex.
The favored Realtors found themselves trailing the Banderas, 46-51, before Jason Melano sparked a decisive 15-point salvo that put them firmly in control, 61-51, with only 1 minute and 23 seconds to go.
Jun Manzo capped that Pasig spurt with a layup and wound up with a game-high 20 points for Pasig, which improved to 5-3 (win-loss) in the single round-robin elimination phase of the 22-team tournament.
Melano finished with 15 points, followed by Robbie Manalang with 10.
Imus, which suffered its third straight defeat and tumbled to 2-6, got 13 points from Genmar Bragais and 7 points each from Moncrief Rogado, Egie Boy Mojica, Adrian Celada and Rene Pacquiao.
Pasig’s cause was bolstered by its accuracy from the charity stripe, where it made 19 of 21 attempts for a lofty 90.5 accuracy. In contrast, Imus converted only 9 of 15 tries for 60 percent.
The MPBL returns to the Paco Arena on Tuesday with another three-game bill. Nueva Ecija seeks its 11th straight win against Bacoor (2-4) at 5 p.m., followed by the GenSan (4-4)-Valenzuela (4-6) tussle at 7 p.m. Zamboanga (8-0) tangles with Manila (4-5) at 9 p.m.