Jul 09, 2024

Batang PBA: Converge tops Phoenix, wins 15-under tournament

CONVERGE held off Phoenix, 91-83, in the duel between unbeaten squads to rule the 2024 Batang PBA-Centrum Kids 15-under tournament on Tuesday at the Ynares Sports Arena.

The Batang FiberXers took control of the tightly fought match down the stretch, taking a comfortable nine-point separation in the last three minutes before fending off the Batang Fuel Masters' late rally.

A clutch three by Kierdy Victoria in the last 31 seconds gave Converge an 89-83 lead and the Batang FiberXers finished the tournament with a perfect 6-0 record.

Victoria finished with a team-high 19 points, including 11 in the payoff period, to spearhead a balanced attack by Converge. Jacob Datu contributed 14, Gabyn Nunag had 12, while Prince Cari?o and Ian San Gabriel had 11 apiece.

Converge trailed 40-41 at the halftime break but picked up their rhythm in the second half and pulled ahead 68-64 entering the fourth quarter. It posted its biggest lead at 86-79 with 3:49 to go.

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Ethan Tan-Chi and Simone Jacob "Sky" Jazul hit back-to-back three-point shots as Phoenix pulled within 83-86 time down to two minutes.

But Victoria responded with that dagger trey while the Batang Fuel Masters muffed multiple chances to tie the game.

Jazul led Phoenix with 31 points. Tan-Chi added 12 while Francis Castro had 11. (JBU)

The Scores:
Converge 91 - Victoria 19, Datu 14, Nunag 12, Cari?o 11, San Gabriel 11, Cabalonga 6, Padilla 6, Basilan 4, Chan 2, Ortiz 2, San Buenaventura 2, Mendez 0, Evangelista 0, Basa 0, Bernardo 0.

Phoenix 83 - Jazul 31, Tan-Chi 12, Castro F. 11, Castro G. 8, Deato 4, Dalag 4, Hesite 4, Gaerlan-Train 4, Baante 3, Bustria 2, Lee 0, Usog 0.
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Quarterscores: 25-22, 40-41, 68-64, 91-83.