GLOBE Asiatique La Salle came from behind to nip Red Phoenix, 96-95, in the main game of Sunday's quadruple header of the 10th TKP Memorial Basketball Cup at TTHS Po Hang Gym.
Defending champion Province of Negros Occidental likewise give opponents a signal that they are not through yet with an emphatic 72-66 win over erstwhile unbeaten PD888 Handy Fix.
UNO-R also gave CSA-Bacolod Toyota a neat lesson in disciplined offense with a 77-69 reversal of fortune as the Rams went into the court a clear underdog with only Nathaniel Salanga the new face in its collegiate roster and sprinkle of veterans.
Red Phoenix went on attack mode early and overwhelmed La Salle with a 25-6 run behind Jerald Abrot and Allan Santander combined 16 points for a 27-14 opening quarter lead.
The Stingers cut the lead to 32-26 behind Rodgi Gelasan. Abrot responded with a trey and Nestor Mioten laid up to get the lead back to 11.
Tiny guard Nico Lopingco took over the offense of La Salle with eight straight points but Ariston Sillana answered with six as Red Phoenix took a 52-45 halftime lead.
A combined five triples by Sillana, Santander and Abrot highlighted Red Phoenix charge that gave them a 75-63 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Five quick points by Nikos Cuenca and Janus Calma's trey immediately chopped the lead at 75-71. After Sammy Belangel hit a triple making it a 10-point advantage, La Salle went inside behind Jobel Abaring and Gelasan to threaten again at 86-80 with 4:54 left.
The Stingers got a big break when Sillana fouled out in las 4:41. A Calma layup and Scott Salvacion's free throws sliced the lead to three.
After a Belangel jumpshot, Abaring sank two gift shots and Cuenca's triple tied the game at 88 all with 2:18 left.
Santander scored from the penalty line but Abaring put in four straight to give La Salle its first lead at 92-90.
Calma, the returnee from National University, hit free throws and Ryan Gamboa's layup cut the lead to 94-93. Santander cut the middle for a basket with a foul with 16.7 seconds left.
Santander missed the bonus and Cuenca banked in a layup with 9.8 seconds for the marginal basket. Abrot and Mioten missed their desperate attempts as time expired.
Abaring and Calma finished with 16 apiece, Randy Baydo added 15, Gelasan 13, Lopingco and Cuenca with 11 each, Loi Miraflores had nine while Red Phoenix had Santander and Sillana with 21, apiece, Abrot had 20, Belangel and Mioten nine each.
CSAB, Province of Negros Occidental and PD888 Handy Fix are tied atop the standings at 3-1, Globe Asiatique La Salle closed out their elimination round with a 2-3 card, UNO-R is at 1-2 while Red Phoenix remains to be a very dangerous team in the knockout stages.
In the lone class B action Rico Cabato fired 27 points in the second quarter seven treys as BBC routed Nepan Clear 106-75. Boknoy Poja 12 Carlo De La Torre and Crismar Dayumat with 10 points apiece Diomedes Mariano contributed nine points, and Jay Uy had eight points. Ryan Angayun paced Nepan with 16 points.
Games Tuesday in Class C My Spaghetti House vs Terra Dolce, 2nd game GT Net vs Foodman.