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MAR Villahermosa put up a tournament-high 33 points to push the Makati-FSD Blazers to a thrilling 92-86 win over Laguna-Krah Asia in the Chooks-to-Go MPBL Invitational powered by TM on Dec. 17, 2021 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.
The win lifted Makati to a 2-1 (win-loss) record in Pool B while Laguna got eliminated from playoff contention. Basilan sits on top at 2-0 while Bicol, who holds the tiebreaker against Makati, is 2-1. Marikina, meanwhile, is 1-2.
“After we lost, the intensity of our players improved,” said Blazers head coach Jocas Castillo as they lost to Bicol last Wednesday, 86-71. “We were able to build our character and we were able to focus more on the game.”
Down 78-77 midway through the final frame, Lord Casajeros scored on a jumper to spark an 8-2 spurt to give Makati an 85-80 lead with 2:47 left. Jonathan Rivera and AJ Coronel tried to get the Heroes back but Jan Formento and Mar Villahermosa had all the answers to keep Makati alive.
Aside from scoring, Villahermosa also helped facilitate their team’s offense and dished out seven assists to go with three rebounds and two steals.
Casajeros added 18 points and six rebounds while Formento chipped in 11 points.
Laguna was led by Perpetual Help standout Kim Aurin who had 22 points and three rebounds for the Heroes while Letran Knight Christian Fajarito tallied a double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds.