NLEX trips Phoenix to sweep mini tournament
MANILA, Philippines – NLEX banked on a balanced scoring attack to topple Phoenix, 104-97, and sweep a four-team mini tournament at the Upper Deck Gym in Pasig City on Friday, February 21.
JR Quinahan delivered 15 points, 4 assists, and 3 rebounds to lead 5 players in double figures as the Road Warriors continue to make a case as one of the contenders for the upcoming PBA Philippine Cup.
Philip Paniamogan had 13 points and 7 rebounds, Raul Soyod added 12 points, while Kevin Alas chipped in 10 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists for NLEX, which also beat San Miguel and Alaska in the pocket tournament.
Bong Galanza finished with 10 points for the Road Warriors.
Stars Kiefer Ravena and Poy Erram were not able to play due to their commitments to Gilas Pilipinas, but their absence was hardly felt by NLEX.
The Road Warriors built an 87-73 lead through 3 quarters and did just enough to stave off a fourth-quarter comeback by the Fuel Masters, who inched within 3 points in the final minute off an RJ Jazul triple, 97-100.
Quinahan restored order for NLEX with a jumper that gave his side a 102-97 advantage with 15 seconds remaining before rookie Will McAloney put the icing on the cake in the victory with a short stab.
Jason Perkins put up 23 points and 6 rebounds, while Matthew Wright had 20 points, 5 assists, and 3 steals for Phoenix, which wrapped up the tournament with a 1-2 record.
NLEX 104 - Quinahan 15, Paniamogan 13, Soyud 12, Alas 10, Galanza 10, Ighalo 9, McAloney 8, Miranda 8, Fonacier 7, Varilla 6, Porter 4, Baguio 2, Lao 0, Paredes 0.
Phoenix 97 - Perkins 23, Wright 20, Napoles 20, Heruela 11, Jazul 8, Chua 7, Potts 4, Reyes 2, Rios 2, Tansingco 0, Marcelino 0.
Quarters: 37-23, 59-43, 87-73, 104-97.