Racal bounces back, Cafe France extends Blustar’s woes

Motivated to atone its first defeat of the tourney, Racal clobbered Topstar ZC Mindanao, 102-83 Tuesday in the 2016 PBA D-League Foundation Cup at JCSGO Gym in Cubao.

Still licking their wounds from the close 83-79 defeat to Cafe France last Thursday, the Tile Masters guards made sure they will deliver this time out, as Jonathan Grey carried the fight with 20 points, eight of which coming in the second quarter breakaway, to go with three rebounds, three steals, and two assists.

Philip Paniamogan also had a 6-of-8 shooting from the field to end up with 16 markers, while Joseph Terso had a 3-of-5 three-point shooting for his 13 points.

Racal bucked its poor start to blast the Aguilas in the second period, pulling away with a 29-point explosion in the quarter to take a 51-38 halftime lead, which would even balloon to 31, 86-55 midway in the fourth.

“We still had a poor start in today’s game. The difference lang is we were able to recover and we had more energy in the second quarter,” said coach Caloy Garcia, as Racal improved to a 2-1 slate.

JR Cawaling led the still winless Topstar ZC Mindanao (0-3) with 22 points.

In the second game, Cafe France regained a share of the top spot with Phoenix as it downed Blustar Detergent, 98-83.

The Dragons fared better this time out, but the Bakers proved to be too much, pulling away to as high as 25, 85-60 before settling for a 15-point win.

“Maybe yung first game nila is just because of the opening jitters. It’s their first feel of basketball dito sa Pilipinas,” said Cafe France coach Egay Macaraya, reflecting on Blustar’s 94-71 defeat to Tanduay on Monday. “Medyo agile ang bigs nila and doon kami nahihirapan everytime. Our advantage lang is our level of basketball is already higher than them.”

Carl Bryan Cruz topped the Bakers with 19 points and five rebounds, while Mar Villahermosa went 4-of-8 from threes to end up with 17 markers.

Paul Zamar chipped in 15 points, two rebounds, and two assists, while Samboy de Leon added 12 as Cafe France remained unscathed after three outings.

Kuek Tian Yuan anchored Blustar with 19 points and three rebounds, while Ma Chee Khuen had an all-around game with 15 markers, eight boards, four assists, and two steals.