PBA Finals: San Miguel bounces back, thumps TNT for tied series at 1-1
MANILA, Philippines–San Miguel Beer shook off the bitter pain of its heartbreaking Game 1 loss and clobbered TNT, 109-100, to tie the PBA Philippine Cup Finals at 1-1 on Wednesday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Vic Manuel, Marcio Lassiter, Jericho Cruz and Mo Tautuaa led a decisive pullaway bridging the third and fourth periods that allowed the Beermen to equal the best-of-seven series after two games.
Their contributions, despite a pedestrian outing from June Mar Fajardo, showcased why TNT was wary of San Miguel’s depth going into the series.
The Beermen also bounced back from an 86-84 loss in Sunday’s series opener when Jayson Castro scored a buzzer-beating jumper which had been debated by fans during the three-day lull.
Game 3 is set Friday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
TNT lost sans coach Chot Reyes, who is in Lebanon to call the shots for Gilas Pilipinas against the said country in the fourth window of the Fiba World Cup Asian Qualifiers.
Assistant Sandy Arespacochaga took place in Reyes’ absence, with the Tropang Giga, led by a hot shooting of RR Pogoy, putting themselves in a position to make it two wins in a row.
Castro split two foul shots for a 79-all deadlock, under a minute to go in the fourth, but Cruz sank a corner three despite being contested by Pogoy late in the same quarter, beginning a run that put San Miguel in control.
Manuel, Lassiter and Tautuaa accounted for the next 11 points and the Beermen went up 95-80, with 7:48 left in the fourth.
SAN MIGUEL 109 — Perez 23, Manuel 20, Lassiter 19, Fajardo 13, Cruz 12, Tautuaa 11, Brondial 7, Ross 4, Enciso 0, Zamar 0. TNT 100 — Pogoy 28, Castro 15, Montalbo 14, Rosario 11, Williams K. 10, Williams M. 7, Erram 7, Reyes 3, Ganuelas-Rosser 3, Khobuntin 2, Marcelo 0. Quarters: 30-28, 51-51, 82-79, 109-100.
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