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Skippers face AMA in D-League opener

Games Today (Ynares Sports Arena)
1 p.m. – AMA Online vs Marinero
3 p.m. – Batangas vs
Go for Gold

Fancied Marinerong Pilipino and three other teams plunge into action today at the start of the 2018 PBA D-League Foundation Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

The Skippers, tipped as one of the top favorites in the six-team, season-ending tourney, take on the new-look AMA Online Education Titans in the 1 p.m. opener.

Marinerong Pilipino, still handled by former pro league mentor Koy Banal, will come in with a different mindset since losing their semifinal series to eventual champion Zark’s Burger.

“Experience has always been the best teacher so I’m expecting my players to put to good use what we have learned before,” he said. “We have high hopes about our campaign and it’s really up to us if we will live up to expectations.”

Clashing in the main match at 3 p.m. are reloaded Go for Gold and Batangas-Emilio Aguinaldo College.

After struggling the last time out, the Scratchers are expected to make some noise this time, with University of the Philippines star Paul Desiderio and National University’s sweet-shooting big man Matt Salem back in harness.

Former Skippers, Gab Banal and Ateneo product Vince Tolentino, have also joined Go for Gold together with Far Eastern University’s Ron Dennison and former pros Jerwin Gaco and Jai Reyes.

Standing in their way are guard Cedric De Joya, Earvin Mendoza, Dexter Zamora and a slew of Generals who are using this tournament as part of their buildup for the NCAA. (Jerome Lagunzad)