By late December it was obvious to MacArthur that the time had come for the retreat to Bataan. For the Philippine Army’s 71st and 91st Divisions, assigned to hold the Baliuag-Plaridel-Calumpit area, the order to withdraw came not a moment too soon. The 91st withdrew during the morning of the 31st. By 1330, the 71st had hastily withdrawn out of Baliuag just as General Sonoda’s 7th Tank Regiment was moving at full speed down Highway 5 towards the town. Sonoda’s tanks and advanced infantry took up positions around Baliuag to allow the remainder of the force’s infantry to catch up and to prepare for an assault on Plaridel and Calumpit. Fearing the green 51st Infantry Regiment would not be able to stand up to the Japanese attack, Brigadier-General Jones sent two tank platoons, supported by a self-propelled artillery battery, to intercept Sonoda’s tanks.
Attacker: American (Company C, 192nd Tank Battalion)
Defender: Japanese (1st Infantry Battalion, 47th Infantry regiment and 7th Tank Regiment "Sonada Force")