Achie Iñigo and Joseph Marata caught fire late as Marinerong Pilipino pulled the rug under Racal Motors to score the 72-71 stunner Thursday in the 2017 PBA D-League Foundation Cup at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
The two conspired in the final three minutes as the Skippers swam their way out of a 10-point well, 71-61, and staged a deciding 11-0 finishing kick, with Iñigo banking the game-winning lay-up with 44.2 seconds to spare to snap their three-game losing streak.
“It boils down to one stop,” said coach Koy Banal. “I never doubted our chances because these players work so much in practice. I told them we won’t let go and we’ll keep on fighting and I’m glad that we got the win.”
Iñigo poured 10 of his 14 points in the payoff period, to go with seven assists and five rebounds, while Marata went on a perfect 2-of-2 shooting from beyond the arc to wound up with 10 markers, six of which coming in that telling run.
Mark Isip added 12 points and two boards, while Julian Sargent had 10 markers and four rebounds in the come-from-behind win.
“It was so hard to pull off a win,” quipped Banal. “But us being at 1-4 humbled us and made us realize that before pride, it’s humility first. That’s what triggered everybody to be excited coming to practice, to prepare, and to work hard, and their willingness to win showed today.”
Gwynne Capacio topped Racal (3-4) with 13 points and two rebounds, while Marlon Gomez and Janus Lozada combined for 20 in the loss.
Racal has now lost four of its last five games and fell in further danger of missing the quarterfinals.
MARINERONG PILIPINO 72 – Iñigo 14, Isip 12, Marata 10, Sargent 10, Javillonar 7, Lopez 6, Javelona 5, Alabanza 4, Moralde 4, Gumaru 0, Publico 0.
RACAL MOTORS 71 – Capacio 13, Gomez 10, Lozada 10, Apreku 9, Ortuoste 7, Tallo 7, Ayonayon 5, Pontejos 4, Cortes 3, Mangahas 2, Faundo 1, Dela Cruz 0, Grimaldo 0.
Quarters: 18-19, 38-36, 53-56, 72-71.