THE San Miguel Beermen try to make it three consecutive wins in the PBA Philippine Cup when they take on the Blackwater Bossing in the first game today at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Opened their campaign in the ongoing Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) tournament with a loss, the Beermen have since been on a roll and steadily climbing the standings.
The most recent of the wins of San Miguel came at the expense of the Northport Batang Pier, 88-86, on July 25, in a game that saw veteran wingman Arwind Santos drain what turned out to be the game-winning basket as time wound down.
San Miguel created separation in the third quarter and was looking to put the game away.
But the Batang Pier had other things in mind, mounting a ferocious comeback to tie the count at 86-all with 7.3 seconds left on the clock.
That set up the Santos heroics.
Off a time out, Marcio Lassiter received the ball and then wove his way into the paint before throwing out a pass to Mr. Santos who calmly drained a 15-foot jumper.
The game-winner capped a solid performance from the 40-year-old former PBA most valuable player, who finished with 17 points, five rebounds and three blocks in 32 minutes of play.
CJ Perez top-scored for the Beermen (2-1), finishing with 18 points to go along with eight rebounds.
Alex Cabagnot had 16 points and seven assists while big men Mo Tautuaa and June Mar Fajardo had 11 and eight points, respectively.
“I hope this momentum continues for us. We needed this win and I’m happy that we snatched this game as this gives us some momentum going to the next three games,” said San Miguel coach Leo Austria in the post-game press conference following their win.
Standing in the way of the Beermen in the 12:30 p.m. game are the Bossing, who have yet to win a game in three outings to date.
Simon Enciso continues to lead Blackwater in scoring with 15.3 points per game, followed by Mike Tolomia (12.3 ppg) and Kelly Nabong (11.3 ppg).
Also seeing action on Wednesday are the league-leading Rain or Shine Elastopainters (3-0) against the Alaska Aces (1-2) at 3 p.m. and the Meralco Bolts (2-1) versus the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters (1-2) at 6 p.m. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo