PBA: Beermen crush Dyip, Elite stun Ginebra
A reminder at halftime. Two big runs in the third quarter. That was all it took for San Miguel Beer to show it was in a different talent level from Columbian Friday night.
Knocking down a record-tying 23 triples, the Beermen reduced the Dyip to a pile of junk with a 143-119 victory in the PBA Governors’ Cup at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
After a defensively lackluster first half where they left themselves open to another upset, the Beermen came up firing in the third, outscoring the Dyip, 43-18, to put the game away.
“That’s the turning point,” said coach Leo Austria of the third quarter. “At the half, I told them that we need to step up our defense.”
San Miguel manufactured enough stops to string its first run: Chris Ross and Arwind Santos had a triple each to sandwich misses by the Dyip before Marcio Lassiter fed a streaking AZ Reid off a Jerramy King miss as the Beermen peeled away from a deadlock at 73 and took an 81-73 spread at the top of the third.
Columbian stayed within reach, 88-82, before the Beermen uncorked the killing run. Lassiter had a triple, Reid completed two three-point plays and Christian Standhardinger had five straight points to highlight that breakaway, which gave the Beermen a 107-84 spread.
That was all San Miguel needed to bounce back from a shock defeat to Blackwater, a game where Reid criticized the team for not taking their foes seriously.
Santos finished with 29 points on 7-of-13 shooting from beyond the arc, Lassiter had 28 built around 6 triples out of 12 attempts and Standhardinger added 21 as the trio almost made everybody overlook Reid’s triple-double performance of 16 points, 17 rebounds and 11 assists.
But even as the Beermen tied the record of TNT in three-point shots made in a game, Austria was not completely satisfied.
“I’m happy we won,” said the six-time champion coach. “But I’m not happy with our defense. It’s a good thing our offense was really good otherwise we would have trailed bigger in the second quarter.”
In the nightcap, Blackwater stayed undefeated with a 124-118 overtime victory over Barangay Ginebra to keep the solo lead in the tournament. —FRANCIS T. J. OCHOA
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