During yesterday’s pre-game shoot-around between Magnolia and Meralco in Cagayan de Oro City, it was pretty obvious that the crowd was waiting for the major star players for each team. The loudest cheers went to Paul Lee, Mark Barroca and Marc Pingris of Magnolia and Ranidel de Ocampo for Meralco.

When the game began, it was certain the crowd at the Xavier University Gym was rooting for Magnolia. Every time Paul Lee makes a spectacular move for a score, the whole venue would erupt for a cheer. After 48 minutes of action, Magnolia was way ahead over Meralco, 94-65. In the end, despite the lopsided score, Kagayanons were treated to a high level of basketball. Browse over some photos below.

Peter June Simon goes for a drive off a pick from Marc Pingris.
Chris Newsome was the lone bright spot for Meralco.
Meralco’s Reynel Hugnatan couldn’t get his act going.
Jared Dillinger played sparingly as he is still recovering from injury.
Anjo Caram proved that small men can play in the pro ranks.
Chris Newsome watches as Peter June Simon makes a jump shot.
Mike Tolomia provided some bench support for Meralco.
Marc Pingris and Reynel Hugnatan are now in the twilight of their careers but can still provide quality minutes.
Garvo Lanete drives to the basket.
Meralco’s KG Canaleta couldn’t get his act going.
Baser Amer writhes in pain after a bad fall in the second quarter.
Chris Newsome uses Jason Ballesteros’ pick to drive to the basket.
Nico Salva is slowly finding his niche in the Meralco team.
Garvo Lanete has his eyes on the basket.
Meralco’s KG Canaleta drives to the basket against Magnolia’s Aldrich Ramos.
Magnolia’s Marc Barroca and Meralco’s Anjo Caram provided speed to the high-octane game.
Marc Barroca tries to fight a pick by Reynel Hugnatan.
Magnolia’s Ian Sanggalang led the Hotshots in the first half.
Rodney Brondial provided some quality minutes for Magnolia.
Justin Melton made some excellent shots for Magnolia.
Rome dela Rosa is proving to be one of Magnolia’s future.
Peter June Simon drives against Chris Newsome.
After a switch, Marc Pingris finds himself guarding Anjo Caram.
Peter June Simon starting a fast break for Magnolia.
Rome dela Rosa was a steady contributor for Magnolia.
Chris Newsome calls for a play for Meralco.
Marc Barroca leads a fastbreak.

all photos by Kim Zaldivar

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