San Miguel Beer imposed its championship might in the fourth to dodge an upset bullet and take down Columbian, 113-107, to bounce back and gain a share of second place in the 2019 Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum last night.
Dez Wells once again went to work, pouring in a game-high 39 points with nine rebounds and five assists while June Mar Fajardo had a double-double with 19 points and 13 rebounds as the duo led the Beermen to victory.
“We played their (Dyip) game in the first half and we set up everything and made the adjustments in the second half,” said San Miguel coach Leo Austria. “We calmed down and played our game.”
“I’m just happy we fought hard to get the win. It was a grind,” said Wells. “We kept our head in the game. We did what we needed to do, still.”
Getting its act together when it mattered, San Miguel manufactured a deciding 17-2 blast in the fourth to snatch the game away emphatically.
Two free throws from Wells gave the Beermen a comfortable 106-95 cushion with 2:49 left, a lead it did not relinquish.
The Beermen were still trailing 89-93 with under seven minutes remaining until in suddenly turned on the heat to finish with a strong kick.
San Miguel improved to 5-1 for shared second place with idle NLEX as it moved closer to securing a berth in the quarterfinals.
The inconsistent Dyip lost its second straight game, dropping to 3-4 down the lower echelon.
The Dyip was actually giving San Miguel all kinds of problems for most part before faltering in the fourth.
Columbian led most of the way and unleashed a 15-4 run midway of the third canto to open a double-digit lead, 70-59, after two free throws from Juami Tingson at the 6:47 mark.
Digging itself out of trouble right away, the Beermen stormed back to cut their deficit to only four, 76-80, heading to the payoff period, keeping themselves in the game.
Khapri Alston was a monster for Columbian, tallying 38 points, 20 in the first quarter, and 25 rebounds for a huge production but his team was unable to sustain its form until the end.
Mo Tautuaa made his San Miguel debut after getting acquired several days ago from Northort in exchange for Christian Standhardinger in a blockbuster deal.
He gave a good account of himself, scoring 10 points and five rebounds.
San Miguel Beer 113 – Dez Wells 39, June Mar Fajardo 19, Alex Cabagnot 15, Terrence Romeo 12, Arwind Santos 10, Moala Tautuaa 10, Chris Ross 5, Von Pessumal 3, Marcio Lassiter 0, Kelly Nabong 0.
Columbian Dyip 107 – Khapri Alston 38, CJ Perez 18, Juami Tiongson 18, Rashawn McCarthy 17, Jackson Corpuz 12, Keith Agovida 2, Joseph Gabayni 2, Celda 0, Philip Cahilig 0, JP Calvo 0.
Quarter scores: 28-26, 51-52, 76-82, 113-107.