Beermen repulse Warriors in ABL opener | Inquirer Sports

Beermen repulse Warriors in ABL opener

/ 01:01 AM January 13, 2013

NEW IMPORT Brian Williams had vowed to deliver for San Miguel Beer.

And Williams did just that as the Beermen recovered from a shaky start to hack out a 64-53 triumph over defending champion Indonesia Warriors at the Season 4 kickoff of the Asean Basketball League (ABL) Friday night in Mahaka Square, Jakarta.

Williams had a double-double of 15 points and 19 rebounds for the Beermen, who also drew key contributions from Chris Banchero and Leo Avenido in the rematch of last season’s finals.

“I’m just here to do whatever coach wants me to do and it helps that I’m familiar with every import in the league,” said the brawny Williams, who suited up for Malaysia last season.

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San Miguel coach Leo Austria, though, described the win as “lucky”  as the Beermen struggled both from the field (35 percent) and the foul line (54 percent).

“If you saw our execution, it was very poor, but we have a lot of experienced players,” said Austria. “It just so happened that we were lucky because they committed a lot of turnovers.”

Banchero fired 14 points and Avenido, the reigning Most Valuable Player, added 10 points and seven boards as they helped power the Beermen to a 45-36 advantage from  a slim halftime lead, 30-25.

The Warriors played minus injured import Stanley Pringle, the speedy Filipino-American guard who played a pivotal role in Indonesia’s first title run last season.

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Pringle is expected to be sidelined for three months due to a meniscus injury.

Aiming to go all the way this time, the Beermen unveiled a retooled roster that included former PBA MVPs Eric Menk (six points, two rebounds) and Asi Taulava (two points, 10 rebounds).

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The Beermen head to Vietnam for their next road game against the Saigon Heat on. Jan. 26 in Ho Chi Minh City.  Jasmine W. Payo

The scores:

SAN MIGUEL BEER 64—Williams 15, Banchero 14, Avenido 10, Rizada 9, Freeman 8, Menk 6, Taulava 2, Luanzon 0, Hubalde 0, Cawaling 0.

INDONESIA 53—Thomas 15, Daniels 10, Canada 9, Smith 7, Wuysang 6, Sitepu 3, Prihantono 3, R. Smith 0, Indrajaya 0.

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Quarters: 16-9, 30-25, 45-36, 64-53

TAGS: ABL, Asean Basketball League (ABL), Indonesia Warriors, San Miguel Beermen

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