With solid contributions — both from the offensive and defensive end — from Alex Cabagnot, Chris Ross, and Arwind Santos, San Miguel racked up their second straight win, 92-88, and jacked their record to 3-2 on Saturday at the expense of Alaska in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart 5G-powered AUF Sports Arena in Angeles City.
Cabagnot led the defending champions’ offense with a game-high 19 points. Veterans Chris Ross and Arwind Santos’ defense shone, with the latter, aside from scattering 17 points, also hauled down 10 rebounds for his second straight double-double, while the former pulled off three steals inside the last two minutes.
“I give credit to the veterans. They stepped up really big. I felt a sense of urgency in them. Everybody’s so focused. We didn’t lose our composure. We’re so happy for them because this stage is very crucial for us. At 2-2 we cannot afford to lose,” said SMB coach Leo Austria.
“We had a four-day break after our last game and this was Alaska’s third game in five days. I think that’s one of the factors,” he added.
With San Miguel’s win, Alaska’s blazing three-game winning streak was shattered. Rookie Kevin Barkley Ebona and Vic Manuel’s 18 points apiece, along with three other Aces scoring in double figures weren’t enough to stretch their teams wins to four.
The Aces now sports a 3-3 record.
San Miguel vs Alaska
Quarters: 27-17, 41-39, 69-68, 92-88.
Beermen (92) – Cabagnot 19,Santos 17, Tautuaa 16, Lassiter 13, Ross 10, Pessumal 8, Zamar 6, Escoto 2, Mamaril 1, Alolino 0, Vigil 0, De Guzman 0, Comboy 0, Gamalinda 0.
Aces (88) – Ebona 18, Manuel 18, Digregorio 13, Herndon 12, Tratter 11, Brondil 9, Casio 7, Teng 0, Ahanmisi 0, Marcelino 0, Galliguez 0, Ayaay 0, Publico 0, Andrada 0.