MANILA, Philippines – Prince Ibeh shone on both ends and anchored NorthPort to a come-from-behind 87-83 win over Blackwater in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday, October 12.
Ibeh finished with 19 points, 10 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 2 steals as the Batang Pier stormed back from 8 points down in the final quarter to rediscover their winning ways after a humiliating 24-point loss to TNT.
While Ibeh took care of business on defense, Arvin Tolentino and Arwind Santos led the NorthPort attack late and connived for an 18-7 run that turned a 66-74 deficit to an 84-81 lead with a minute left.
Tolentino scattered 10 of his 15 points during that stretch, including the floater that gave the Batang Pier an 82-79 advantage.
After Troy Rosario narrowed the gap to a whisker for the Bossing, Santos knocked down a contested jumper to cushion their three-point edge before Ibeh practically sealed the win for his side by splitting his free throws.
Santos chalked up a double-double of 14 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 steals off the bench, while Tolentino added 6 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 1 steal.
Robert Bolick flirted with a triple-double in the win after posting 12 points, 10 assists, and 7 rebounds as NorthPort hiked its record to 3-2.
Jerrick Balanza chimed in 13 points, 4 assists, and 3 rebounds for the Batang Pier.
As the Batang Pier bounced back, the Bossing were sent crashing back to earth following their stunning upset of San Miguel despite a solid offensive performance from import Cameron Krutwig.
Krutwig fired a career-high 28 points on top of 17 rebounds and 4 assists in the loss that dropped Blackwater to 2-3.
Rosario had 17 points and 5 rebounds in the losing effort, while Baser Amer contributed 16 points.
NorthPort 87 – Ibeh 19, Tolentino 15, Santos 14, Balanza 13, Bolick 12, Ferrer 7, Taha 3, Caperal 2, Chan 2, Salado 0, Sumang 0.
Blackwater 83 – Krutwig 28, Rosario 17, Amer 16, Ular 8, Ayonayon 7, Suerte 4, Taha 2, Banal 1, Ebona 0, McCarthy 0, Jackson 0.
Quarters: 16-22, 37-42, 64-68, 87-83.