Magnolia clips NLEX in Game 6, advances to PH Cup finals
MANILA, Philippines – The Magnolia Hotshots booked the last ticket to the finals of the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup by outlasting the NLEX Road Warriors, 96-89, in Game 6 of their best-of-7 semifinals series at the Araneta Coliseum Tuesday, March 20.
The game was still in the balance with the Road Warriors trailing by just two points with two minutes left in the game, 89-91, before the Hotshots took a 5-point lead thanks to Mark Barroca's 3-point play off a steal on Kiefer Ravena's pass, 94-89.
With 1:30 minutes left, NLEX had enough time to narrow the gap but another turnover, this time from Larry Fonacier, paved way for an easy Jio Jalalon layup that stretched Magnolia' lead 7, 96-89.
NLEX missed all of its last 3-point attempts as the Hotshots secured the victory.
Ian Sangalang finished with 15 points and 11 rebounds for Magnolia while Jio Jalalon had 11 points, 13 assists and two steals.
Mark Barroca chipped in 14 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists while Aldrech Ramos and Kyle Pascual combined for 20 markers in the win.
Mike Miranda paced NLEX with 20 points and 8 rebounds.
Magnolia will face the reigning 3-time All-Filipino champions San Miguel Beermen in a best-of-7 championship series.
It is the first time since the 2013-2014 season that the Hotshots, then the San Mig Super Coffee, play in the Philippine Cup finals.
Game 1 of the finals will be on Friday, March 23, at the same venue.
Magnolia (96): Sangalang 15, Barroca 14, Jalalon 11, Pascual 10, Ramos 10, Dela Rosa 9, Lee 9, Reavis 6, Simon 6, Herndon 4, Brondial 2
NLEX (89): Miranda 20, Fonacier 17, Baguio 10, Ravena 9, Mallari 8, Taulava 7, Soyud 6, Tiongson 5, Quiñahan 4, Ighalo 3
Quarter scores: 20-29, 49-46, 71-68, 96-89