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Unbeaten San Miguel clinches playoff berth after rout of NorthPort

April 22 ------ SAN Miguel sealed its entry to the quarterfinals while staying unbeaten after routing NorthPort, 120-100, in the PBA 48th Season Philippine Cup at the Philsports Arena. The Beermen led by as many 39 points to extend their undefeated run to 7-0 and clinch a berth in the next round with still four games to play. 


So dominant was San Miguel that it hit the century mark in the third quarter, and only trailed in the game for 19 seconds when NorthPort went up, 15-14. The struggles continued for the Batang Pier, who lost for the fourth straight time to fall to 4-5. San Miguel coach Jorge Gallent said there is still work to be done for the Beermen even after clinching a quarterfinal berth, nothing how the Beermen led, 114-75, early in the fourth only to score just six the rest of the way. “We tend to relax with a big lead. We just have to keep that energy there until 48 minutes. We were up by 39, and then in the last five, six minutes, it just went down to 20 because the energy level went down,” said Austria. 


CJ Perez poured in 29 points including 10 in the first quarter that ended with San Miguel on top, 36-27. Mo Tautuaa had 15 points while Marcio Lassiter added 14 points including 4-of-5 from threes that moved him to fourth place in the all-time three-points made list, He now has 1,197, three ahead of Blackwater’s James Yap. San Miguel now takes on Magnolia in a rematch of the Commissioner’s Cup finals on Friday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum. Arvin Tolentino had 26 points and nine rebounds for NorthPort, which will next face Terrafirma on Wednesday at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium. 


The scores: 

San Miguel 120 – Perez 29, Tautuaa 15, Lassiter 14, Trollano 13, Fajardo 12, Teng 10, Enciso 9, Brondial 8, Ross 6, Romeo 4, Mallillin 0. 

NorthPort 100 – Tolentino 26, Lucero 10, Bulanadi 10, Munzon 10, Cuntapay 9, Zamar 8, Amores 4, Flores 4, Adamos 4, Taha 3, Rosales 3, Paraiso 3, Yu 2, Chan 2, Navarro 2. 

Quarters: 36-27; 72-47; 105-71; 120-100. 





Editor’s note 

CONVERGE finally ended its 12-game losing streak, defeating Meralco, 104-99, in the PBA 48th Season Philippine Cup at the Philsports Arena. Bryan Santos finished with 22 points on 7-of-10 from three-point range for the FiberXers’ first win since December 13 when they beat Terrafirma, 103-94. Stockton had 20 points before fouling out while Justin Arana had 18 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists for the FiberXers, who still trailed at the half, 53-42, the biggest gap of the game. Meralco fell to 3-5 and is now tied with Phoenix, its next opponent on Friday, for 10th place in the team standings. 


The scores: 

Converge 104 – Santos 22, Stockton 20, Arana 18, Winston 14, Delos Santos 10, Caralipio 9, Maagdenberg 4, Melecio 4, Nieto 2, Vigan-Fleming 1, Fornilos 0. 

Meralco 99 – Newsome 25, Banchero 20, Black 19, Hodge 10, Quinto 9, Caram 6, Pasaol 5, Bates 5, Maliksi 0, Rios 0, Torres 0, Pascual 0. 


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