San Miguel ousted as Stephenson, Liaoning advance to Terrific 12 finals
MACAU—San Miguel suffered a brutal 111-89 semifinals defeat to Liaoning to ends its East Asia Super League: The Terrific campaign Saturday at Tap Seac Sports Pavilion here.
The Beermen settled for the bronze medal game against Zhejiang from the CBA while the Flying Leopards will take on KBL’s Seoul in the finals.
Things were still fairly even after the first quarter with San Miguel trailing by just three, 26-23, but the Flying Leopards went berserk in the second with an 25-7 blitz to take a 51-30 lead heading into the break.
Dez Wells getting into foul trouble compounded San Miguel’s woes with the small forward absorbing three fouls just in the first half.
“At the start we thought we would play well but we got into foul trouble especially with our import,” said San Miguel head coach Leo Austria.
San Miguel managed to match up with Liaoning in the second half but the deficit proved insurmountable for the Beermen to overcome.
Lance Stephenson had his way with the Beermen’s defense putting up 35 points and 10 rebounds while Salah Mejri was the force underneath finishing with 21 points, 11 rebounds, and four blocks.
“Lance Stephenson is a really high caliber player and it’s hard to contain him and he’s got a lot of support from Salah Mejri and a lot of local players who really performed well for them,” said Austria.
The Beermen coughed the ball away 17 times and that led to 15 points off turnovers for the Flying Leopards.
Liaoning, which tallied 13 steals in the game, bullied the Beermen, who were without five-time PBA MVP June Mar Fajardo, in the paint scoring 20 second chance points off of 14 offensive boards.
Terrence Romeo led the Beermen with 19 points, five rebounds, and six assists while Wells finished with 16 points.