Top D-League pick Joshua Munzon shows off in AMA debut

MANILA, Philippines – AMA Online Education steered past McDavid to take the 80-65 victory Tuesday, February 19, in the 2019 PBA D-League at Paco Arena in Manila.

Top draft selection and former ABL stalwart Joshua Munzon registered a double-double with 12 points, 10 boards, and 3 assists while Franky Johnson played big in this season opener for the Titans with 24 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 steals.

Fellow rookie Troy Rike collected 15 markers and 8 boards.

"'Buti nag-jell kami nang maaga. At least, nagsama-sama sila (It’s good that we jelled early on. At least, they got together)," said a jovial coach Mark Herrera. 

Johnson's early spurt allowed AMA to take a 10-0 lead as they went on cruise control in the wire-to-wire victory, annexing the lead to as much as 18, 71-53 early in the 4th period.

Former La Salle captain Kib Montalbo also chimed in 6 points and 5 assists for the Titans, in a game where Andre Paras only saw 4 minutes of action.

AMA grabbed a share of the Aspirants Group lead together with opening week winners Cignal-Ateneo and UST.

McDavid, for its part, leaned on Jason Melano who collected 15 points, 9 rebounds, and 3 assists.

In the second game, the CEU Scorpions showed off in their debut, drubbing reigning UCBL champions Diliman College-Gerry’s Grill Blue Dragons, 88-65.

Lanky Senegalese center Malick Diouf anchored CEU with 15 points and 17 rebounds. Tyron Chan also netted 15 markers with all 3 of his three-pointers coming in the 3rd quarter alone.

From a 41-37 lead at halftime, Chan sparked the Scorpions’ third-quarter run and ended the frame already up 21, 70-49. The stunned Dragons never recovered from there and ultimately got blown out in their D-League debut.

Beninese big man Kevin Gandjeto paced Diliman with 18 points and 9 rebounds. Joseph Brutas added 14 markers on 4/8 (50%) shooting from downtown.

The Scores:

First Game:

AMA 80 – Johnson 24, Rike 15, Munzon 12, Parcero 8, Montalbo 6, Yu 6, Dela Virgen 5, Garcia 2, Bederi 2, Tambeling 0, Estibar 0, Paras 0, Asuncion 0, Liwag 0, Gonzaga 0.

McDavid 65 – Melano 15, Martinez 10, Escosio 8, Diputado 7, Canada 6, Sorela 4, Colina 4, Monte 3, Pena 2, Cruz 0, Villanueva 0.

Quarters: 21-14, 45-35, 62-53, 80-65.

 

Second Game:

CEU 93 – Diouf 15, Chan 15, Guinitaran 13, Lisbo 9, Uri 8, Rojas 8, Fuentes 7, Diaz 7, Ke. Caballero 6, Intic 2, Formento 2, Ko. Caballero 1, Pamaran 0.

Diliman College 76 – Gandjeto 18, Brutas 14, Ligon 12, Cabanag 11, Mahari 7, Bauzon 4, Darang 4, Coquia 2, Enriquez 2, Salazar 2, Bonsubre 0, Melendez 0, Brill 0.

Quarters: 22-23, 41-37, 70-49, 93-76.

– Rappler.com