Barroca Marc Barroca of Magnolia looks to make a play against Chris Ross of San Miguel Beer. Photo by Ernie Sarmiento

Close battle in Game 4

February 10, 2024 Robert Andaya 207 views

SAN Miguel Beer is determined to bounce back from last Wednesday’s 80-88 defeat and regain its winning ways.

Magnolia Chicken Timplados is hoping to ride its new-found confidence and even the best-of-seven title series.

Game 4 of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup scheduled on Friday promises to be another action-packed battle at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Game time is 7:30 p.m.

In a bid to keep their championship aspirations alive, the top-seeded Hotshots relied on their trademark defense to outplay the Beermen, limiting them to just 80 points.

Before their Game 3 win, the Hotshots conceded over 100 points in each of the initial two games, both resulting in defeats.

Six players for the Hotshots also reached double digits in scoring, with Mark Barroca leading the pack with 20 points on 10-of-21 shooting on top of six assists, four rebounds, and two steals for Coach Chito Victolero’s squad.

Paul Lee, who faced difficulties in the first two games, had 12 points this time.

Magnolia import Tyler Bey scored 11 points on 5-of-14 shooting and grabbed six rebounds in 45 minutes of action.

Ian Sangalang contributed 11 points and six rebounds, while Aris Dionisio added 11 points and five rebounds.

Jio Jalalon chipped in with 10 points, seven rebounds, and five assists in Magnolia’s victorious effort.

“This is just one win. Wala pa kaming na-achieve. The two-day rest gave us a good chance to win. Medyo naka-recover ang body at nakabalik kami to play with energy,”said Victolero, whose team avoided falling to a 0-3 hole in the race-to-four series.

Asked about their first two games, Victolero admitted defense failed them.

“No excuses, but we had a hard time doing our defensive scheme (in the first two games). They are just humans at nakakaramdam ng pagod. Pero yung two-day rest really gave us a good chance. Naipakita namin ang aming defensive mentality. Yun kasi every time umiskor sila ng 100 points, mahirap silang talunin,” added Victolero in an interview posted on website.

Despite enduring a rough night, Bennie Boatwright managed to contribute 27 points on 10-of-28 shooting and grabbed 13 rebounds in almost 45 minutes.

Gilas Pilipinas mainstay CJ Perez chipped in 16 points and five rebounds for coach Jorge Gallent-mentored San Miguel.

Seven-time PBA MVP June Mar Fajardo tallied just 11 points, along with 13 rebounds and four blocks.

Jeron Teng also contributed 10 points to the team’s effort.

SMB played without Jericho Cruz, who was sidelined due to a one-game suspension resulting from accumulating five technical fouls this conference.

The scores:

Magnolia (88) – Barroca 20, Lee 12, Bey 11, Sangalang 11, Dionisio 11, Jalalon 10, Dela Rosa 7, Abueva 6, Escoto 0, Laput 0, Reavis 0.
San Miguel (80) – Boatwright 27, Perez 16, Fajardo 11, Teng 10, Trollano 7, Lassiter 4, Brondial 3, Ross 2, Enciso 0, Tautuaa 0.
Quarterscores: 24-15, 42-39, 63-58, 88-80.