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ANTIPOLO, Philippines – San Miguel preserved its perfect record in the PBA Philippine Cup after hacking out an 87-81 win over Magnolia at the Ynares Center here on Friday, June 17.
Flaunting their vaunted depth, the Beermen saw Mo Tautuaa and five more of their players score in double figures as they grabbed the solo lead in the standings with a 3-0 record.
Tautuaa showed the way for San Miguel with 19 points and 5 rebounds, while CJ Perez chalked up 15 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 blocks, including the one-handed dunk that put the nail in the Hotshots’ coffin.
Mark Barroca cut the Magnolia deficit, 81-83, with under a minute remaining but missed their last two field goals and committed a turnover as the Beermen scored 4 straight points capped by that Perez slam to secure the win.
June Mar Fajardo put up 14 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 blocks in the victory, Jericho Cruz had 10 points, 7 assists, and 5 rebounds, while Rodney Brondial tallied 10 points and 9 rebounds.
Marcio Lassiter also posted 10 points to go with 2 blocks and 2 steals for San Miguel, which prevailed despite the injuries of Chris Ross and Vic Manuel.
Ross left the court in the second quarter after hurting his knee during a layup attempt, while Manuel played just five minutes due to a calf injury.
The Hotshots also battled injuries as Paul Lee (back) sat out for the second time this conference, but managed to keep in step with the Beermen and even led 63-60 after the third quarter behind Barroca.
Barroca impressed with 25 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, and 4 steals in 30 minutes of play.
The absence of Lee and a quiet outing from Calvin Abueva, though, took their toll on Magnolia as it got outscored 18-27 in the fourth quarter on the way to its third loss in four games.
Sangalang backstopped Barroca with 16 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 blocks, while Adrian Wong netted 11 points.
Coming off a 23-point, 12-rebound performance in their first win of the season against NorthPort last Wednesday, Abueva finished with just 4 points and 6 rebounds in the loss.
San Miguel 87 – Tautuaa 19, Perez 15, Fajardo 14, Brondial 10, Lassiter 10, Cruz 10, Ross 6, Enciso 2, Manuel 1, Pessumal 0.
Magnolia 81 – Barroca 25, Sangalang 16, Wong 11, Dionisio 8, Dela Rosa 5, Abueva 4, Jalalon 5, Corpuz 3, Laput 2, Ahanmisi 2, Brill 0, Zaldivar 0, Escoto 0.
Quarters: 22-25, 35-42, 60-63, 87-81.