PBA: 'Big 3' fuels Petron in win over Globalport
MANILA, Philippines - Alex Cabagnot notched a triple-double, Arwind Santos led a second half rally, and June Mar Fajardo returned from injury to lead the Petron Blaze Boosters over the Globalport Batang Pier, 98-87, in the PLDT myDSL PBA Philippine Cup on Friday, January 10 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Cabagnot finished with 10 points, 11 rebounds, and 13 assists for his first-ever triple-double in the league; the reigning MVP Santos scored a game-high 25 points, including 19 in the second half. June Mar Fajardo logged 12 points and 6 rebounds in 24 minutes of play.
The Batang Pier banked on the first half heroics of Jaypee Belencion, who waxed hot for 12 points including three triples. They also defended the Boosters absolutely well, limiting them to just 29.5% from the field to transform a 29-31 deficit into a 51-39 halftime edge.
The tide would change in the third quarter however, when Globalport failed to score a field goal for over three minutes. Santos sparked a 17-4 rally that gave the Boosters the lead at 56-55.
Both teams then exchanged baskets, resulting to a 68-all deadlock after three quarters. The intense shootout continued in the final period; Santos and Belencion led their respective squads with one basket after another.
But it was Santos who got the better in the fiery duel, spearheading a 9-0 spurt with Chris Lutz to give Petron the 88-80 lead, with just 3:22 left.
Fajardo, who returned from a knee injury after missing three games, put the nail on the coffin after back to back baskets inside the paint.
"Tough win for us. The other guys had a terrific defensive job in the first half. It's just different when (June Mar Fajardo) is there offensively and defensively," said Boosters head coach Gee Abanilla after the match.
Boosters spoil Belencion's career-game
Averaging just 2.7 PPG coming into the game, Jaypee Belencion finished with a career-high 21 points, shooting 4-of-7 from beyond the arc. The sophomore wing man did everything he could in a gallant stand, although his team bowed down against Petron Blaze.
The Batang Pier also lost the services of veteran Jay Washington, who went down with an injury early in the first half. Sol Mercado paced Globalport with 16 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists.
With the win, Petron notches solo second in the team standings with a 9-3 card while Globalport dropped to 4-8, joining Alaska in joint 8th place.
Petron (98) - Santos 25, Lassiter 16, Lutz 13, Fajardo 12, Kramer 11, Cabagnot 10, Tubid 7, Deutchman 2, Ross 2, Lanete 0.
Globalport (87) - Belencion 21, Mercado 16, Nabong 15, Chua 9, Salvador 8, Garcia 8, Romeo 4, Menk 2, Salva 2, Najorda 1, Hayes 1, Washington 0.
Quarters: 20-22, 39-51, 68-68, 98-87. - Rappler.com