PBA: Magnolia moves closer to playoff berth, thumps Blackwater | Inquirer Sports

PBA: Magnolia moves closer to playoff berth, thumps Blackwater

/ 09:57 PM March 22, 2019

ANTIPOLO — Magnolia added to Blackwater’s woes with a 97-87 decision in the PBA Philippine Cup elimination round action Friday at Ynares Center here.

Rome dela Rosa paced the Hotshots with 17 while Paul Lee chimed in 16 more to help the Hotshots pull away in the final frame. Ian Sanggalang provided anchorage all game long with 16 points and 10 rebounds.


“We knew Blackwater was going to play without pressure,” Magnolia coach Chito Victolero said in Filipino. “Good thing our defense and our desire pulled us through.”


“[T]hey’re really tired,” he said of his wards, who were playing their third game this week. “But we’re happy because we’ve achieved our goal of winning before going into the All-Star break.”

Magnolia firmed up its bid to secure a comfortable spot in quarterfinals. The latest victory nudged Hotshots to a 5-5 record, putting them in the 6th spot just behind reigning conference champions San Miguel Beermen.

Victolero’s crew remains unbeaten at Ynares Center since Game 6 of the Finals last year, where the team won the 2018 Governor’s Cup title.

Magnolia will try to end its elimination round campaign on a winning note and try to lock down on a comfortable spot in the quarterfinals its plays 4-5 NLEX after the All-Star week.

Blackwater wrapped up its conference with a 2-9 slate, a stark contrast to its commendable showing in last season’s third conference where it chalked up a franchise-best 7-4 card.

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