Thirdy Ravena and the San-En NeoPhoenix could not avert another fourth-quarter collapse, crumbling over the Shinshu Brave Warriors 79-92 in the 2021-22 Japan B. League at the Toyahashi City General Gymnasium on Wednesday (10 November).
The Filipino churned out 10 points, five rebounds, one block and an assist in almost 25 minutes of action for the NeoPhoenix, who lost steam down the stretch and fell to a 3-9 win-loss record.
Knotted at 64-all in the fourth period, the Brave Warriors' Josh Hawkinson and Yuta Okada spearheaded a late onslaught with an 18-4 run that turned the tight game into a blowout.
Making matters worse for San-En, the deflating defeat extended their losing skid to four games.
On the other hand, Shinshu, despite keeping Matthew Aquino on the bench, rose to a 7-5 slate.
The Brave Warriors barely needed the presence of Aquino as Hawkinson carried the cudgels with a near double-double output of 28 points and nine rebounds. Okada also had a productive outing with 23 points, two boards and a pair of blocks.
For their part, the NeoPhoenix was spearheaded by Shota Tsuyama and his 17 points in the tough loss.
Ravena and San-En will try to regain their winning ways as they prepare for a weekend clash with Dwight Ramos and the Toyama Grouses.
Meanwhile, Aquino and the Brave Warriors will aim to sustain momentum when they take on Kiefer Ravena and the Shiga Lakestars also this weekend.
Ohmer Bautista is a sports journalist who has covered local and international sporting events in the Philippines. The views expressed are his own.