Avenido takes over as Beermen prevailBy Jasmine W. Payo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Just four days after a sub-par outing, Leo Avenido fired 33 points to power the San Miguel Beermen past the Bangkok Cobras, 86-78, in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) Sunday at the Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok.
Avenido came out firing, hitting 19 points in the first half before winding up with his personal season-best in the Beermen’s fifth straight victory.
“I know what Leo brings to the table,” San Miguel coach Bobby Parks said of Avenido, the first player from his squad to post a 30-point game in the league.
Avenido also shot an impressive 60 percent from the field, including a 6-of-10 clip from three-point range.
His explosive performance came after the Beermen’s home-game win over the Singapore Slingers, 75-65, last Wednesday, where Avenido found his shooting touch a tad late before finishing with just nine points.
With the triumph that improved the Beermen’s record to 10-3, the two Philippine squads in the regional tournament strengthened their hold of the top two spots.
The AirAsia Philippine Patriots also picked up a road-game win, 90-87, over the Westports Malaysia Dragons a day earlier for a league-best 10-2 slate.
Even before his record game, Avenido already leads all of San Miguel’s local performers by averaging 13 points.
DJ Johnson also helped the Beermen get off to a strong first half, 43-33, before finishing with 20 points and eight rebounds.
The Beermen stayed ahead virtually the entire game, pulling away by as many as 18 points, 78-60, after opening the fourth quarter with a 10-0 surge.
“We are beginning to jell the way we want to,” said Parks. “We are playing better now and the chemistry has been improving game after game.”
George Travis and Filipino import Marvin Cruz teamed up for 36 points to lead the Cobras, who slipped to 5-7.
SAN MIGUEL BEER 86—Avenido 33, Johnson 20, Famous 12, Dimaunahan 10, Fernandez 4, Ferriols 3, Fajardo 2, Yap 1, Baguion 1, Cabatu 0, Gonzales 0.
BANGKOK 78—Travis 20, Cruz 16, Lewis 15, Reyes 14, Wanna 5, Kruatiwa 3, Klahan 2, Apiromvilaichai 2, Chaiwat 1, Limsuwan 0, Kongkum 0.
Quarters: 23-18, 43-33, 68-60, 86-78