Manuel came off the bench to score a new career-high 29 points, way above his 26.5 average the last two games, in leading the Aces to their straight win in four games.
Antonio Campbell also played a major role with 23 points and 20 rebounds and the rest of the Alaska crew did their part in a hot start that gave the team momentum for as much as a 25-point 92-67 spread.
From there, the Aces had little trouble in coasting their way to the end and into a share of the lead with idle Meralco, their victim and Rain or Shine on top of the 12-team heap.
The Elasto Painters, however, could break out of that tie should they prevail over the defending champion San Miguel Beermen later in the evening,
Alaska coach Alex Compton is simply glad his charges were able to execute their primary target of limiting TNT’s vaunted scorers in Jayson Castro, Terrence Romeo, Roger Pogoy and Jericho Cruz.