Team Red, led by Senator Bong Go and courtside reporter Apple David, tops Shooting Stars competition as Team White places 2nd.
The PBA All-Star weekend Friday, March 10, witnessed a thrilling Rookies, Sophomores, Juniors game, where Team Greats eked out a 158-138 victory over Team Stalwarts in Passy City.
WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS. Team Greats players and coaches celebrate their title victory after beating Team Stalwarts, 158-138, in their Rookies, Sophomores, Juniors game of the recently-concluded PBA All-Star Weekend in Passi City. Adrian Wong romps away with the most valuable player (MVP) honors. PBA PHOTOS
Magnolia’s Adrian Wong was instrumental in anchoring the Team Greats’ assault with an outstanding performance, scoring 29 points, including back-to-back shots from four-point range in the final quarter, which held back a spirited rally by Team Stalwarts.
Wong’s game’s first four-point basket set the tone for the high-scoring match, giving his team a 22-17 lead in the first quarter. He continued his dominant performance, capping it with a three-point dunk in the final minutes of the game. Wong’s impressive performance earned him the MVP award and his trophy, along with a P30k prize purse.
“I’m just happy everyone came out and competed,” Wong said.
“I was just feeling it so I kept on rolling and see what happens afterward,” he added, referring to the game’s first four-point shot.
Javi Gomez De Liano led Team Greats with 30 points, 18 of which came in the first half as he joined forces with Wong to give their side a slim 65-63 lead at the break.
Rookies Justin Arana and Ato Ular also contributed 23 points each for the winning team, coached by Richard Del Rosario.
Despite a spirited fightback by Team Stalwarts, which saw Encho Serrano explode with 33 points in the second half, they could not overcome the dominant Team Greats, who outscored them 54-41 in the fourth quarter.
Serrano finished the game with a commendable 40 points for Team Stalwarts, while Joshua Munzon and Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser contributed 32 and 21 points, respectively.
The game was an exciting display of high-scoring basketball, leaving the capacity crowd at the City of Passi Arena thoroughly entertained. The PBA All-Star weekend’s Rookies, Sophomores, Juniors game was a great success, with both teams showcasing their talents and providing basketball fans with a night to remember.
Meanwhile, Team Red emerged as champions in the Shooting Stars competition.
The team, composed of Senator Bong Go, courtside reporter Apple David, Inquirer sportswriter Jonas Terrado, and fan Kobe Ordaniel wowed the fans with their speedy performance.
They reached the half-court station with an impressive 23 seconds left on the shot clock, thanks to David’s surprise, an underhand shot from the four-point area. However, they failed to convert from midcourt.
David then came through with a clutch hit, after Senator Go nailed a three-pointer off a pass from Terrado.
The winning teams received cash prizes and plaques, with Team White, comprising former Letran player and current Passy City councilor Ramon Andrei Pantin, Cignal’s Bea Escudero, and fan Jephe Palmes, finishing as runners-up.
Justin Bacnis sank it from the four-point range with 6.5 seconds left to take a shot at midcourt, allowing Team White to also reach half-court.
Team Blue, featuring courtside reporter Denise Tan, former UST volleyball player, Reuben Terrado of SPIN.ph, and fan Christopher Magallon, failed to make it to half-court, unable to sink the four-point shot.
In the local 3×3 tournament organized by the league, Blackwater emerged as champions with a 21-16 win over Terrafirma in the championship game.
Cash prizes and medals were awarded to both the champion and runner-up teams.