Fajardo June Mar Fajardo of San Miguel Beer powers his way against two Converge defenders in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup. Photo by Ernie Sarmiento

It’s San Miguel

December 9, 2022 Robert Andaya 365 views

DEFENDING champion San Miguel Beer showed too much class in beating Converge, 114-96, and drew first blood in their PBA Commissioner’s Cup quarterfinal series at Philsports Arena in Pasig City.

Six players, led by CJ Perez and import Devon Scott, scored in double figures for the Beermen, who led by as many as 31 points to roll back the FiberXers and move one win away from advancing to the semifinals of this season-ending, import-flavored conference.

Perez finished with 25 points on 11-of-17 shooting on top of four rebounds and three assists in nearly 28 minutes of action.

Scott added a double-double of 23 points 12 rebounds and five assists for the Beermen, who were never seriously threatened in the game.

MVP June Mar Fajardo also had a double-double performance with 19 points and 16 rebounds while Terrence Romeo contributed 13 points for SanMiguel of acting head coach Jorge Gallent.

Marcio Lassiter chipped in 11 points.

“I think our players played good defense.We practiced hard fo two days and we really prepared for their three-point shooting,” said Gallent,who is now 5-0 since taking over the coaching reins from head coach Leo Austria.

Quincy Miller scored a game-high 41 points, including 32 in the second half, Miller went 15-of-33 from the floor while adding 13 rebounds in 43 minutes.

Aljun Melecio and Justine Arana had 11 points each for the Aldin Ayo-mentored FiberXers.

But Converge’s ace gunner, Jeron Teng , was limited to only five points on a dismal 1-of-7 shooting.

Later, No. 3 Barangay Ginebra lived up to high billing as defeated No. 6 NorthPort, 118-102.

Justin Brownlee finished with 39 points, eight rebounds and seven assists to Ginebra to within a win of advancing to the Final Four.

The scores:

First game

San Miguel (114) — Perez 25, Scott 23, Fajardo 19, Romeo 13, Lassiter 11, Enciso 8, Tautuaa 6, Ross 5, Cruz 4, Brondial 0
Converge (96) – Miller 41, Melecio 11, Arana 11, Tratter 10, Ahanmisi 7, Teng 5, DiGregorio 5, Ilagan 4, Stockton 2, Bulanadi 0, Tolomia 0, Racal 0, Ambohot 0
Quarterscores 21-13, 55-32, 88-65, 114-96.

Second game

Ginebra (118) – Brownlee 39, Pringle 16, Malonzo 13, Tenorio 12, Thompson 11, Gray 9, J.Aguilar 7, Mariano 6, Standhardinger 5
NorthPort (102) – Tolentino 29, Bolick 21, Ibeh 18, Ferrer 15, Sumang 9, Navarro 8, Ayaay 2, Chan 0, Calma 0, Balanza 0
Quarterscores: 29-24, 56-50, 89-74, 118-102.