Lanete takes over late, Barako Bull stops NLEX’s winning run
MANILA, Philippines – Chito Lanete fueled a game-ending 8-0 run with back-to-back three-pointers and the Barako Bull Energy put an end to their 4-game slide, 91-85, in the 2015 PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Tuesday, March 24 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The veteran guard scored 6 of his 13 points inside the final two minutes, turning an 83-85 deficit into an 89-85 edge for Barako Bull with 1:28 left.
“Chico, he’s a veteran that you can rely on down the stretch,” head coach Koy Banal said. “Back-to-back three-pointers, it was big for us. I’m glad he was able to step up.”
Paolo Hubalde iced the game with a pull-up jumper for the final tally as the Energy held the Road Warriors scoreless for the last 5:58.
Import Solomon Alabi had 29 points, 15 rebounds and 4 blocks in the win. Guard Sol Mercado finished with 12 points, 9 assists and 4 rebounds.
JC Intal and Jake Pascual chipped in 10 points apiece. Barako Bull, which led by as much as 13 points early in the third, will be assured of a playoff spot should San Miguel Beer win its Tuesday night tiff versus Globalport.
Barako’s triumph also put NLEX’s 5-game winning run to a screeching halt as the Road Warriors blew a 6-point edge midway in the fourth.
Al Thornton wound up with 24 points and 9 rebounds while Mark Cardona, who scored the last basket for NLEX, paced his team with 15 points and 7 boards.
NLEX wrapped up its eliminations campaign with a 6-5 record while Barako Bull settled for 5-6.
Barako Bull (91) - Alabi 29, Lanete 13, Mercado 12, Intal 10, Pascual 10, Garcia 7, Hubalde 6, Lastimosa 2, Marcelo 2, Matias 0, Salvador 0, Salva 0.
NLEX (85) - Thornton 24, Cardona 15, Ramos 9, Taulava 9, Canaleta 8, Lingganay 7, J. Villanueva 5, E. Villanueva 4, Borboran 2, Baloria 0, Camson 0, H. Arboleda 0, W. Arboleda 0.
Quarters: 26-23; 51-49; 72-75; 91-85.