Beermen build 3-1 cushion | Inquirer Sports

Beermen build 3-1 cushion

San Miguel Beer started and ended the game like it was in a rush to finish off Barangay Ginebra Friday night.
By: - Reporter / @cedelfptINQ
/ 12:19 AM March 04, 2017

San Miguel Beer started and ended the game like it was in a rush to finish off Barangay Ginebra Friday night.

And after unleashing the full brunt of their attack on the Gin Kings in a 94-85 thumping in Game 4 for a 3-1 lead in the PBA Philippine Cup finals series, Beermen coach Leo Austria feels his players are ready to wrap up the series on Sunday night.

“Anything can happen, but I can see in the body language of the players that they don’t want to let this go,” said Austria, after the Beermen secured their second straight victory in the series to move within a win of claiming the perpetual trophy.


“I just hope we finish this off (on Sunday) because everybody is really tired.”


June Mar Fajardo and Marcio Lassiter finished with 20 points each, while Chris Ross fired 17 points and dished out nine assists for the Beermen, who raced to a 20-2 lead in the first five minutes of the game to establish control.

The Beermen led by as many as 26 points in the third period, 60-34, before the Gin Kings fought back behind Joe Devance to make a game out of it in the final period.

But just like in Game 3, the Beermen delivered a strong response, this time through Alex Cabagnot, who hit a couple of tough step back jumpers with the shot clock winding down to quell Ginebra’s hopes of a comeback.

San Miguel’s outside shooting once again proved key with the Beermen hitting 15 treys, 10 more than the Gin Kings. Ross nailed five of 10 triples, while Lassiter had three treys and Arwind Santos and Ronald Tubid accounted for two rainbow shots.

“They beat us black and blue,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone. “From start to finish it was their game. They were awesome. They did everything they wanted to do. We tried to change it up, but by and large the game was lost in the first five minutes.”

Still nursing a foot injury, Devance had his best offensive game of the series with 22 points, but the Gin Kings still struggled to find ways to match the Beermen’s firepower in the second half.


“They just showed us how powerful they are,” said Cone. “We knew it would happen once to us (in the series) but now it’s happen to us twice. It’s overwhelming to us.”

Meanwhile, Fajardo was named Best Player of the Conference in a short awards rites before the match.

It was the fifth such trophy for Fajardo, who is also the reigning three-time MVP.

“I’ve forewarned everybody about June Mar in his first year,” said PBA legend Ramon Fernandez of Fajardo, who like him hails from Cebu province. “As long as he stays healthy, he will dominate the league.”

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“I’m thankful for this award,” Fajardo said. “But it would mean a lot to me if the team wins the championship so that everybody will be happy.”

TAGS: Barangay Ginebra, June Mar Fajardo, Leo Austria, Marcio Lassiter, PBA Philippine Cup, San Miguel Beer

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