San Miguel Alab Pilipinas completed its magical journey from starting the season with a 0-3 record to ultimately winning the 2017-18 ASEAN Basketball League title in a thrilling 5-game series against Mono Vampire Basketball Club of Thailand, Wednesday night at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex in Laguna.
Alab claimed the title in from of almost 6,000 screaming fans which packed the venue in eager anticipation of the home team’s victory.
World import and Co-Defensive Player of the Year awardee Renaldo Balkman paced the Philippine squad with 32 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists.
The 33-year old Puerto Rican led a strong opening salvo that gave Alab an early 18-8 lead that set the tone for the entire game.
Justin Brownlee was equally instrumental in the win. The resident Brgy. Ginebra import almost came through with a triple-double, finishing with 24 points, 12 rebounds and 9 assists.
Ray Parks capped his season and series-long brilliance with 13 points and was later on named as Finals MVP.
Mike Singletary led the losing team with 32 points while 7-foot-5 behemoth Sam Deguara added 24. Filipino Paul Zamar gave a good account of himself before moving over to the PBA finishing with 19 points.
The win marks the 3rd time that a Philippine team brought home the ABL title. The Philippine Patriots first did the trick during the 2019-10 season while the San Miguel Beermen duplicated the feat in 2013.
Alab Pilipinas 102 – Balkman 32, Brownlee 24, Parks 13, Raymundo 9, Domingo 9, Javelona 7, Urbiztondo 5, Hontiveros 3, Celiz 0, Maierhofer 0, Sumalinog 0.
Mono Vampire 92 – Singletary 32, Deguara 24, Zamar 19, Brickman 9, Chantachon 6, Apiromvilaichai 2, Khukhandhin 0, Boonyai 0, Sunthonsiri 0, Phuangla 0, Ananti 0, Klahan 0.
Quarterscores: 27-14; 54-45; 82-61; 102-92.