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MANILA, Philippines – Magnolia claimed the solo lead in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup after shredding NorthPort to pieces to the tune of a 112-74 demolition at the Araneta Coliseum on Friday, November 17.
Tyler Bey finished with 25 points to lead five players in double figures as the Hotshots remained unbeaten to improve to 3-0 going into their much-anticipated Manila Clasico clash against rival Barangay Ginebra on Sunday, November 19.
A commanding 28-8 advantage at the end of the opening quarter proved enough for Magnolia to send Batang Pier crashing back to earth after NorthPort enjoyed a surprising 2-0 start to the conference.
Bey also put up 8 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks, and 1 steal, Mark Barroca delivered 17 points and 4 assists, Paul Lee churned out 16 points, 6 assists, and 5 rebounds, while Ian Sangalang tallied 11 points and 6 rebounds.
Jio Jalalon chimed in 11 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds, and 3 steals for the Hotshots, who shot a healthy 56% from the field as they pounded the ball inside with 56 points in the paint.
Sangalang and Barroca joined hands to help Magnolia pull away, scoring 6 points each in a pivotal 15-0 run that propped up a 28-7 lead.
NorthPort, which beat Terrafirma and Rain or Shine in convincing fashion, failed to replicate its magic against the mighty Hotshots as it recorded more turnovers (16) than assists (14) and got outrebounded by 14 (41-55).
The loss spoiled the recent coronation of Arvin Tolentino as the first PBA Press Corps Player of the Week of the 48th season.
Fresh from a career-high 35-point outing against the Elasto Painters, Tolentino still dropped 22 points with 7 rebounds, but the hole the Batang Pier got buried in proved too deep for the team to climb out of.
NorthPort import Venky Jois turned in just 16 points and 8 rebounds – a massive drop from his averages of 36.5 points and 15.5 rebounds in the first two games.
Magnolia 112 – Bey 25, Barroca 17, Lee 16, Sangalang 11, Jalalon 11, Laput 8, Escoto 5, Reavis 4, Corpuz 4, Dela Rosa 4, Corpuz 4, Dionisio 3, Eriobu 2, Tratter 2, Murrell 0, Ahanmisi 0.
NorthPort 74 – Tolentino 22, Jois 16, Salado 8, Chan 6, Zamar 4, Flores 4, Caperal 3,Amores 2, Ayaay 2, Munzon 2, Paraiso 2, Taha 2, Yu 1, Balagasay 0.
Quarters: 28-8, 56-30, 82-48, 112-74.