Jericho Cruz bounced back from a bad first game with a game-high 22 points as the San Miguel Beermen repulsed the Blackwater Elite Bossings, 105-86, on Wednesday in the Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup at the Philsports Arena in Pasig.
Cruz said encouraging words from the coaching staff pushed him to be better this time around for the Beermen, who posted their second straight win.
“Binigyan nila ako ng kumpiyansa. Masama kasi ang una kong laro. Bumawi ako,” said Cruz.
The 6’2” shooting guard was held to just two points when the Beermen turned back the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters, 114-93, last Sunday in the Philippine at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.
Cameron Clark shot 20 points for the Beermen, who already had the game under control near the end of the first half.
The Beermen, now coached by George Gallent, enjoyed their biggest edge at 30 points, 63-33, at the 52-second mark after Clark knocked in two free throws.
“We just had to learn how be smart on defense and play smarter. In the first half, we were running and it just suddenly stopped,” said Gallent.
Gallent recently replaced Leo Austria, who had a total of nine championships in the last eight years for the Beermen.
Six Beermen ended up with double figure outputs.
June Mar Fajardo finished with 19 points and 13 rebounds, while CJ Perez made 18 points, five rebounds, and seven assists. Newbie Allyn Bulanadi shot 16 points, including 13 in the first half.
Simon Enciso knocked in 14 points, while Marcio Lassiter added 11 markers as the two combined for seven of the Beermen’s 14 three-pointers.
San Miguel Beermen 105—Cruz 22, Clark 20, Fajardo 17, Perez 14, Lassiter 13, Enciso 9, Tautuaa 7, Ross 3, Bulanadi 0, Brondial 0
Blackwater Bossing 86—Glover 16, Torralba 11, Ilagan 10, Taha 8, Banal 8, Hill 8, Ular 6, Casio 6, Ayonayon 5, Amer 4, Suerte 2, Escoto 2, DiGregorio 0
QUARTERS: 33-24, 63-35, 83-68, 105-86