PASAY CITY – Keifer Ravena weaved through the defense and drove strong to deliver the winning basket with 1.3 seconds to play as his PCWorx All-Stars slid past Gawad Kalinga, 98-96, at the All-In Charity Basketball Game Wednesday night (November 5) at the Mall of Asia Arena. GK coach Allen Iverson immediately sued for time but Mr. Afrika missed his top of the key jumper at the buzzer.
Composed of a selection of Philippine college standouts reinforced by NBA veteran and one-time PBA import Dermarr Johnson and coached by the multi-titled Tim Cone, PCWorx rallied from five points down in the final minute beginning with Ravena’s clutch basket and Johnson’s triple that tied the count at 96-96 at the 35-second mark.
A selection of some of the world’s finest street ballers under the guidance of NBA legend Iverson, GK looked to turn the game into a laugher as they mocked their younger opponents with trademark fancy plays after one period, 28-16. The Professor led the way with 10 quick points while G. Smith had eight, all on slam dunks.
Smith and Afrika continued their dunking exhibition to push GK to their biggest lead, 37-20. PCWorx then staged a mild uprising behind Troy Rosario and Keifer’s younger brother Thirdy Ravena to close in by halftime, 44-50.
Egged on by the home crowd, Jeron Teng began to assert himself in the third canto by erupting for seven markers as he combined with Johnson to continue PCWorx’s rallies. Teng completed a three-point play and Jaymar Perez added a free throw to force the game’s first deadlock at 73-73 entering the last period.
The Bone Collector then took over as he presided over a 15-5 opening tear that gave GK ample breathing space midway through the fourth, 88-78. Johnson began sniping from the outside by knocking in a pair of triples and Mac Belo chipped in four more points to threaten, 91-93.
Johnson led all scorers with 24 points spiked by four triples to go with 10 rebounds. Teng and game hero Keifer Ravena both finished with 16 points.
The Bone Collector had 13 of his team-best 20 points in the fourth period. Smith followed with 19 markers, including eight slam dunks.
Completing the winning side were Ola Adeogun, Jayvee Mocon and Almond Vosotros. Seven-foot NBA veteran Eddy Curry was supposed to see action for PCWorx but a recent injury kept him on the bench to cheer on his mates.
PBA living legend Robert Jaworski Sr. added star power to the game, watching from the sidelines with his son Dudut and grandsons. PBA stars Jerry Codinera, Willie Miller and Renren Ritualo were added to the GK roster.
Proceeds of the game went to Gawad Kalinga as they further their mission of providing decent housing for the underprivileged. The event is a corporate social responsibility project of main sponsor PCWorx, a leading supplier of computers, office equipment and IT services.
Wednesday’s game capped the whirlwind three-day tour of Iverson that included a youth basketball clinic at the Gawad Kalinga community in Barangay Holy Spirit. Quezon City. Sports agent Sheryl S. Reyes facilitated The Answer’s visit, his second to the Philippines after more than a decade.
How They Scored:
PCWORX (98) – Johnson 24, K. Ravena 16, Teng 16, Rosario 12, Belo 11, Perez 7, F. Ravena 6, Adeogun 4, Mocon 2, Vosotros 0.
GAWAD KALINGA (96) – Bone Collector 20, G. Smith 19, Special FX 18, Professor 14, Mr. Afrika 13, AO 6, Air Up There 2, Ritualo 2, Codinera 2, Miller 0.
Period Scores: 16-28, 44-50, 73-73, 98-96.