Pampanga Giant Lanterns wins MPBL title

BACOOR, Cavite — The Pampanga Giant Lanterns (PGL) quashed the Bacoor Strikers, 82-77, to win the 2023 Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) Fifth Season national title.

Governor Dennis “Coach Delta” Pineda has attributed this historic victory to the unyielding heart of the players and the sincere prayers of the Kapampangan community. “Huwag kayong susuko hanggang sa 4th quarter,” Coach Delta told the PGL players, urging the team to persist until the final moments of the game.

Encho Serrano’s outstanding performance contributed 16 points in the second half, supported by Archie Concepcion’s 18 points and Reyson’s 13 points, showcasing the team’s seamless unity and teamwork.

Most Valuable Player (MVP) Justine Baltazar has asserted his dominance with 11 points and an astounding 19 rebounds. MJ Garcia contributed 9 points, and Allen Liwag with 4 points and 11 rebounds.

Coach Delta has acknowledged the formidable challenge posed by the Bacoor Strikers, emphasizing the tense nature of Game 3. “Ang gusto ko lang sabi ko dapat dikit lang ang laban. Pagdikit tayo ng 4th quarter at lumamang tayo, atin tong laban na ito,” shared Coach Pineda.

Despite Bacoor’s brave efforts, led by Jhan Nermal (20 points), James Kwekuteye (15 points), and Jhaymo Eguilos (11 points, 8 rebounds), they fell short to win the title in their homecourt.

The Giant Lanterns’ historic victory, crowned by the sweep of the title series, etched their name in MPBL history as trailblazers who achieved this remarkable feat. The championship trophy, handed over by MPBL Founder and CEO Manny Pacquiao, symbolized Pampanga’s outstanding accomplishment as the fifth champion in the league’s illustrious history.

The PGL’s MPBL victory resonates profoundly within the Kapampangan community, transcending beyond sporting glory to signify the formidable strength, unwavering pride, and unity of Pampanga.

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