Jericho Cruz set for Guam duty after PBA championship

Jericho Cruz set for Guam duty after PBA championship

/ 08:33 PM February 15, 2024

PBA jericho Cruz San Miguel Guam Fiba

San Miguel Beermen’s Jericho Cruz celebrates his team’s latest PBA championship. –MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines–There’s still some business for Jericho Cruz to deal with after playing an important part in San Miguel Beer’s run to the PBA Commissioner’s Cup crown.

Cruz is scheduled to next put his focus on helping Guam start off its bid to play for next year’s Fiba Asia Cup on the right track in the first qualifying window slated next week.

Guam will play two away matches on Feb. 22 against Japan in Tokyo before heading north to Ulaanbaatar three days later to face Mongolia.

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“I’m excited to play for Guam. Hopefully, we can get some wins,” Cruz said in Filipino after the Beermen finished off the Magnolia Hotshots in Game 6 Wednesday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The 33-year-old has been representing Guam since Feb. 2020, being eligible to represent the island nation after the Pasig-born Cruz grew up in Saipan.

He’ll also use it as a pseudo-vacation since Cruz will be joined by his family, before getting a full relaxation in the United States to visit his mother.

READ: PBA Finals: Left open, Jericho Cruz torches Magnolia in Game 5

Cruz is aware that Guam coach EJ Calvo closely monitored his performance in the Finals. And the way they saw Cruz, they may have plenty of good reasons to be confident.

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The PBA Press Corps’ Mr. Quality Minutes emerged as one of the significant reasons why the Beermen captured a record-extending 29th title with his dual role of making key shots and coming up with the defensive plays.

But the last two games saw Cruz produce on offense, tying his career-high with 30 in Game 5, then had a couple of crucial triples during San Miguel’s completed comeback in the series clincher.

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“If we lost this series, I might feel like I should not go,” he said. “But since we won, I got my ticket ready for Guam.”

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TAGS: PBA, San Miguel Beermen

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