MPBL: Lanterns host Patriots

Games today (Angeles University Foundation Gym)
5:30 p.m. – Marikina vs Zamboanga
7:30 p.m. – Pampanga vs Parañaque

AFTER a three-day break, action in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League goes to Angeles City in Pampanga as the Pampanga Lanterns play host against bitter rival Parañaque Patriots-F2 Logistics at the Angeles University Foundation Gym.

The two squads, which figured in a tug-of-war with two key players in the off season, square off in the main game at 7:30 p.m. right after the match between the Marikina Shoemasters and the Zamboanga Valientes-Family’s Brand Sardines at 5:30 p.m.

Ex-PBA player Juneric Baloria and frontliner Daniel de Guzman played for the Patriots last season and were key figures in the squad’s entry to the Final Four of the Rajah Cup, but they decided to leave the team after the tournament and transferred to the Lanterns right after the tournament.

Tonight, the two key players will be playing against their former team as they try to lead their new squad, the Lanterns, to their first home win and avoid disappointing the Cabalens, who are anticipating a successful campaign this time around.

Pampanga lost its first home game against San Juan, one that saw the ejection of former GlobalPort player Michael Juico, who was slapped with two technical fouls. Juico served his suspension in his team’s last game against Bacoor, but will be back in action to help the Lanterns against the undefeated Patriots.

The Patriots had won their first two games in an impressive fashion and it would be sweeter to add the Lanterns to their growing list of victims in this event put up by Senator Manny Pacquiao with PBA legend and 25 Greatest member Kenneth Duremdes serving as commissioner.

Earlier, Marikina and Zamboanga collide at 5:30 p.m. as both teams are aching to bounce back from two straight losses.

The Shoemasters lost two in a row, including one at home against the Imus Bandera-GLC Truck and Equipment. They will be facing a tough team form the south, the Valientes, who are also out to atone from the back-to-back losses they suffered.