NATIONAL Housing Authority and Philippine International Trading Corp. firmed up their semis bids by downing their respective rivals at the start of the quarterfinal round of the 8th UNTV Cup recently at the Paco Arena in Manila.
The NHA Builders of coach Benneth Palad used a big fourth quarter assault to end the four-game winning streak of the Judiciary Magis 67-59 while the PITC Global Traders came through with a 35-point explosion in the second quarter to beat the Department of Agriculture Food Masters 74-61.
Antonio Lustestica and Alvin Vitug sparked NHA’s decisive breakaway by combining for 20 points in the payoff period, with the former highlighting the run with two booming treys that shattered a 43-all count.
NHA improved its record to 7-3 in the annual tournament for public servants that offers P4 million to the chosen charity of the champion team.
Vitug went on to finish in double-double with 21 points and 11 boards while Lustestica added 14 aside from helping limit the production of Judiciary’s top gun Chester Tolomia to just 17 points.
The Global Traders started tentatively but went on a scoring spree in the second quarter that saw them outscore the Food Masters 35-12 for a 44-29 halftime advantage.
Ryan Regalado struck hardest for the Global Traders, scoring all his 12 points from the three-point area while Luis Lopez had 10 points and 12 boards.
They gallantly protected the fort the rest of the way in hiking their record to 6-4 – the same mark of the Magis.