Petron nips Air21, but sets franchise-low winning score


08:17 PM March 1st, 2013

By: Celest R. Flores, March 1st, 2013 08:17 PM

Renaldo Balkman vs Mark Isip. Nuki Sabio/PBA

MANILA, Philippines — Petron bucked a dismal shooting effort and nicked skidding Air21, 60-53, Friday night in the 2013 PBA Commisioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Boosters set an all-time lowest winning output in franchise history, but head coach Olsen Racela said he really didn’t mind as long as they got their fourth win.

“It was a defensive game for both teams and the scores showed it,” said Racela. “At halftime, I told the guys I don’t care if it’s a low scoring game as long as we make the defensive stops.”

Renaldo Balkman and Arwind Santos scored 25 and 11 points, respectively, as Petron only made 24 of its 75 attempts from the field

The last sequence, wherein Santos bungled a dunk and Balkman came up short on the put back, just typified the Boosters’ shooting woes.

The Express, though, also had a tough night from the field with 27.6 percent shooting (3-of-22 from three-point range).

They also got over just scoring seven points in the second quarter and even took a 40-36 lead on a basket by Wynne Arboleda with 1:25 left in the third.

Import Mike Dunigan had 15 points and 23 rebounds for Air21, which absorbed its fourth loss in five games, while no other player finished in double digits.

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