Taulava sparks Beermen to 10th straight ABL winBy Jasmine W. Payo |Philippine Daily Inquirer
THE OLDEST player on the floor came out with the numbers of a young star.
Playing his best game yet, Asi Taulava sparked San Miguel Beer’s second-half surge as the Beermen turned back Westports Malaysia, 80-62, to streak to their 10th straight win in the Asean Basketball League yesterday at Ynares Sports Arena.
Taulava, who turned 40 last month, highlighted his game-high 26 points with eight straight points in a pivotal 10-0 run that gave the Beermen their first double-digit lead, 45-34, after a tight first half, 35-34.
“Asi was unstoppable,” San Miguel coach Leo Austria said of the former PBA MVP, who also grabbed five rebounds and dished out three assists. “I’m happy to see a 40-year-old playing like a 20-year-old.”
The Beermen, who already set the league’s longest winning streak in their last outing, strengthened their hold of the solo lead with a 13-3 record.
Brian Williams dropped 13 points on top of 14 rebounds and three blocks for the Beermen, who kept the Dragons at bay the rest of the second half as their bench also came through.
Leo Avenido added 11 points for the Beermen, while Hans Thiele came out with another strong effort off the bench with 10 points and seven boards.
SAN MIGUEL BEER 80—Taulava 26, Williams B. 13, Avenido 11, Thiele 10, Williams J. 8, Banchero 5, Rizada 5, Acuña 2, Fortuna 0, Hubalde 0,
WESTPORTS MALAYSIA 62—Hubbard 15, Armon 11, Tautuaa 11, Edwards 10, Melton 5, Seng 5, Kuppusamy 3, Batumalai 2, Ooi 0.
Quarters: 21-19, 35-34, 56-46, 80-62