<
>

Big Boss Cement Porac wins Leg 7 of Chooks-to-Go 3x3 MelMac Cup

Ryan Monteclaro once again stole the show for Big Boss Cement Porac as they once again upset Pasig Chooks, 21-18 (6:28) in the Leg 7 Finals of the Chooks to Go Pilipinas 3x3 MelMac Cup presented by Gold's Gym and Coca Cola Monday afternoon.

The former Adamson stalwart, who has taken the Vietnamese 3x3 circuit by storm, once again dazzled for Porac, scoring eight points in the title round, including the impossible game-winner.

Monteclaro drove to the basket, turned his back against the defender, and made a wild circus shot that went off the glass at the 3:32 mark.

His younger brother, Nikki, also provided a much-needed spark for the champions, adding seven points, including some timely baskets.

It clinched another P100,000 prize for the franchise, their second title in four appearances, another one at the expense of the best 3x3 squad in the country.

The matchup was their third Finals duel, but this was the first time Porac prevailed. Porac dethroned the four-time defending champs in Leg 5 in the semis last October 19.

Much like their two previous showdowns, the game was neck-and-neck until Ryan broke a 9-all tie, scoring five straight points to break the game wide open, 14-9.

Franky Johnson and Joshua Munzon then teamed up to slice the lead to two, 14-12.

After Porac again widened the lead to four, 17-13, Johnson swished one from the outside to make it just two, 17-15.

Unfortunately for Pasig, they were called for their seventh foul, which meant two free throws plus possession for Porac.

Nikki nailed two from the charity stripe to come within championship point, 20-16.

Afterwards, Johnson nailed the desperation heave, their last basket of the night.

"We were being looked down upon, because we're small, but we stayed locked in and focused ourselves," said Ryan Monteclaro, now the 21st-ranked player in the country. "Luckily for us, we were hitting our two pointers."

Porac played with only three players in the last 6:45 after Janus Lozada was ejected for headbutting Troy Rike. It didn't matter, however, for the newly-crowned champions.

Johnson contributed 10 for the runners-up, all of them coming from the great beyond. Munzon added five, as they took home P30,000 for finishing second.

MSC BiƱan City - Azi&Tets Travel N Tours, the Leg 6 finalists, bagged P20,000 for notching third.

In women's action, Maroon Thunders prevailed over Team X in the last dance, 13-8.

Aileen Balmero led her group to its first title, posting five points en route to a P20,000 incentive.

Balmero also was awarded as the Chooks-to-Go Harissa Roast Two-Point Shootout champion, besting Troy Rike and Jasmine Tiu-Malto.

Team X went home with P10,000 in another bridesmaid finish.

Leg 8, the season-ender, will be held Tuesday at the same venue.