The Best: The Mixers came up with the biggest buckets and biggest plays down the stretch to pull out a huge victory in game three against the Tropang Texters. With the game’s momentum swinging back and forth, SMC leaned on clutch plays from Marc Pingris, Joe Devance, PJ Simon, and Mark Barroca to get some separation in crunch time. Barroca, in particular, was splendid in this one, scoring 18 points on 50% FG shooting on top of 12 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals (including a key swipe off KG Cañaleta in the final minute) to lead the Mixers to the next round. SMC will square off against sister team and top-seeded Ginebra in the semifinals.
The Worst: The Texters relied on their three-point shooting late in the game, and it eventually spelled their doom. Jimmy Alapag, Jayson Castro, and KG Cañaleta all threw up bricks in crunch time as TNT played catch up. By the game’s end, the Texters shot just 29% from long range, with Castro, Cañaleta, and Alapag accounting for 13 misses. That error-filled windup derailed a great game for both Cañaleta and fellow forward Ranidel De Ocampo. Cañaleta finished with a nice double-double line (13 points and 10 rebounds), while RDO registered 22 points. This loss formalizes the Texters’ failure to defend their Philippine Cup crown and have a shot at a rare four-peat.
QuickMelton: Justin Melton, formerly of the Malaysia Dragons in the ASEAN Basketball League, came up huge for coach Tim Cone and the Mixers. Primarily known for his speed and high-leaping ability, the pint-sized Fil-American wowed everyone with his outside shooting here. Melton came off the pine to hit 4 of his 7 three-point attempts, which accounted for all of his 12 points. He also added 4 boards and 3 dimes in a memorable breakout performance. – Rappler.com