TNT gave reigning PBA Philippine Cup champion San Miguel a harsh reality check with a 107-88 blowout win at the Angeles University Foundation in Pampanga on Friday, October 16.
Poy Erram played his finest game in a KaTropa uniform with a career-high 27 points and 15 rebounds as they remained undefeated in 3 games and dealt the Beermen their second straight defeat.
As San Miguel sorely missed the presence of six-time PBA MVP June Mar Fajardo, Erram frolicked inside the paint and sank all of his 9 two-point field goals, with all of his misses coming from beyond the arc.
Erram became the third consecutive TNT player to a notch a career-high in points after Roger Pogoy and Ray Parks scored personal-bests of 45 and 40 points, respectively, in their first two games in the PBA bubble.
"We're fortunate to have guys like Roger, Ray, and tonight, Poy, step up," said KaTropa head coach Bong Ravena.
Parks backstopped Erram with 22 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 steals as 4 other players scored in double figures in the victory that saw TNT lead by as large as 22 points.
The Beermen cut their deficit to 7 points, 64-71, with 5 minutes left in the 3rd quarter but Simon Enciso sank back-to-back triples and a jumper to end the period for a 92-70 KaTropa lead.
Enciso had 10 points, Troy Rosario added 16 points and 8 rebounds, while Pogoy chipped in 15 points and 4 rebounds before leaving the game due to a left ankle sprain.
Jayson Castro netted 11 points, 11 assists, and 2 steals in the win.
San Miguel also spread the wealth with 5 players scoring in twin digits, but a lethargic opening quarter where it got outscored 18-30 by TNT proved to be its undoing as it dropped to 1-2.
Alex Cabagnot led the Beermen with 15 points off the bench, Marcio Lassiter contributed 14 points, Chris Ross chimed in 13 points, Arwind Santos put up 11 points and 10 rebounds.
Terrence Romeo had a scorching first half with 11 points but he left the game with 5 minutes left before halftime after dislocating his shoulder.
TNT 107 - Erram 27, Parks 22, Rosario 16, Pogoy 15, Castro 11, Enciso 10, Reyes 3, Flores 3, Semerad 0, De Leon 0, Alejandro 0, Vosotros 0, Washington 0.
San Miguel 88 - Cabagnot 15, Lassiter 14, Ross 13, Romeo 11, Santos 11, Tautuaa 9, Zamar 5, Pessumal 3, Mamaril 2, Escoto 2, Gamalinda 2, De Guzman 1, Alolino 0, Comboy 0.
Quarters: 30-18, 57-38, 92-70, 107-88.
Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.