Henton fires 36 points as Aces post second straight win

September 08, 2017

THERE is little doubt the fire has really been lit under Alaska.

Displaying a more sustained effort on both ends the Aces dealt GlobalPort a 101-88 defeat Friday, the former's second straight in the PBA Governors Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.

LaDontae Henton notched 36 points and 21 rebounds, but the help provided by Calvin Abueva and Noy Baclao in the fourth period proved crucial in Alaska's follow up to its breakthrough 90-79 win over San Miguel Beer last Saturday.

Now with a 2-6 slate overall, the Aces climbed a notch higher to 10th place, still out of the top eight advancing to the quarterfinals following the 11-game eliminations but certainly in the thick of the race.

"Big win, obviously," said Alaska coach Alex Compton. "We're happy to put together another win."

The Aces could further enhance their chances should they prevail in all their remaining matches, starting with Kia on Sunday.

"We still have a long way to go and we still have to play again right away. We have a very short time to prepare for Kia," said Compton.

The loss was GlobalPort's second straight, dropping it to a 3-5 record.

Murphey Holloway wound up with 25 points and nine rebounds, Sean Anthony 19 and nine, Macmac Cardona 12 points in only his second game back and Bradwyn Guinto 10 points.

Yet the absence of Stanley Pringle, in the US attending to his ailing father, and Terrence Romeo mostly misfiring and scoring only five points, some 18 below his average, helped spell the Batang Pier's doom.

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Help was something Henton got plenty of.

After missing his first four shots Abueva came alive in the fourth period where he scored all 12 of his points while trying to stifle Holloway.

"We all have our rusty starts and I felt he was rusty at the beginning," said Compton of Abueva who also hauled down five boards.

"But one of the things you are not going to do is to be able to contain Calvin's energy. It's like he'd work through the rust."

Baclao also did his part after seeing action only in the payoff canto where he scored all eight of his points, collared three rebounds and blocked two shots.

With Abueva and Baclao leading the charge, Alaska was able to fully break away from a tight 76-74 count before Henton and Jayvee Casio provided the finishing touches.

Casio finished with 11 points and five assists and Sonny Thoss 10 points.

The ending was in stark contrast to the third quarter where five of the game's six deadlocks took place, the last at 67 to end the period.

GlobalPort actually led by 61-57, but could not hold on to it for long while Henton scattered 14 of his points.

"The thing I like about the last two games is... lamang kami, humabol ang kalaban, lumamang na kalaban, pero imbes na nag-fold kami, nag-bounce back kami," noted Compton.

"I guess that's the thing I wanted to see."