Fiery fuel | Inquirer Sports

Fiery fuel

Phoenix books quarterfinals berth
/ 05:27 AM March 02, 2019

Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.net

Phoenix Pulse banked on its defensive might to rout Alaska, 94-80, and book a playoff berth in the PBA Philippine Cup on Friday at Mall of Asia Arena.

Calvin Abueva tormented his former team, posting 21 points and 16 rebounds even as Matthew Wright chimed in with 20 points and three assists to help the Fuel Masters grab a share of the tournament lead with their seventh win in eight games.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Big break because we faced a depleted team,” said coach Louie Alas. “But still, I give credit to my guys. They were exhausted from the last game and yet they pressured. We were able to expand our lead in the third because of that.”

Phoenix’s leech-like defense helped their lead swell to as many as 26 in the final frame.

FEATURED STORIES

Alaska, which was missing several key players—including star big man Vic Manuel, relied on Jeron Teng and Carl Bryan Cruz, who accounted for 23 and 10 points, respectively.

RJ Jazul and Justine Chua combined for 29 to push the Fuel Masters alongside Rain or Shine on top—but Alas knows the road will only get rockier from hereon.

“This is only formalizes our entry [to the quarterfinals]. We are now aiming for the top two spots to prepare us for the semifinals,” he said.

Phoenix is now bracing for its final stretch of elimination round, where it will face the champions of all three tournaments last season—San Miguel Beer, Barangay Ginebra and Magnolia.

The Fuel Masters will kick off that killer stretch with a showdown against the Governors’ Cup champion Hotshots on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Blackwater leaned on brilliant offensive performances from Allein Maliksi and Mac Belo to breathe life into their playoff bid and trip Columbian, 106-100, earlier in the day.

“We were able to execute the game plan we’ve been practicing for weeks,” Ramos said. “My players really wanted to win.”

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Alaska, Allein Maliksi, Calvin Abueva, PBA, PBA Philippine Cup, Phoenix Pulse
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.
Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our sports news

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.



© Copyright 1997-2023 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.