Alaska ends San Miguel Beer's 8-game win streak
MANILA, Philippines – Romeo Travis registered a game-high 32 points and converted 5 late game-clinching points as the Alaska Aces stopped the streaking San Miguel Beermen in its tracks, 82-77, in the 2015 PBA Governors' Cup on Saturday, June 20 at the Panabo Multi-Purpose Tourism, Sports and Cultural Center in Panabo City, Davao del Norte.
Travis, who added 10 rebounds, two steals and two blocks, stayed composed and took it strong to the defense for a two-point basket and a three-point play that turned a 3-point San Miguel edge into a 79-77 Alaska lead with 51.2 seconds remaining.
JVee Casio sealed the Aces' 4th straight victory and the top spot after he went 3-of-4 from the free throw line as time ticked down.
The Beermen, which came back from 21 points down and nearly salvaged a victory to end its elimination round campaign, shot back-to-back corner triples including a 4-point play, for a 77-74 advantage with 2:47 left. But San Miguel failed to score again and relinquished its hold of first place with an 8-3 record.
None of Alaska's other starters neared double figures with Calvin Abueva giving the only other significant offensive support with 12 points and 6 rebounds off the bench.
Arizona Reid led San Miguel with 17 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 steals. Coming off a 39-point night against Blackwater, Reid went cold from beyond the arc as he missed all 8 of his three-point attempts. He was also severely inefficient from the field with 7-of-24 shooting.
June Mar Fajardo finished with a double-double of 12 markers, 12 boards and 3 blocks, while Ronald Tubid contributed 15 points off the bench.
San Miguel came out flat from the opening period and allowed Alaska a 47-31 halftime lead. But the Beermen came alive and outscored the Aces 28-18 in the third as Fajardo shifted into rim protector mode to hamper Alaska.
The Beermen, which was out-rebounded severely by 60-44, capitalized instead on the Aces' miserable 1-of-13 three-point shooting to turn the game around.
Tubid rattled home a corner triple plus the rare bonus to tie the game for the first time at 74-all with under 4 minutes remaining. But the immense effort it took to get back into the game from a huge double-digit deficit proved too much for San Miguel, which hopes to avoid a playoff meltdown after a searing 8-game win streak in the eliminations since a 0-2 conference start.
Alaska can solidify its hold of the top spot if it defeats its last foe Globalport on Tuesday, June 23.
Both the Aces and the Beermen are assured of the twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals. – Rappler.com