After 3 years, San Miguel back as Philippine Cup champions
After a three-year absence as rulers of the Philippine Cup, San Miguel reclaimed the crown before a jampacked crowd inside Smart Araneta Coliseum by subduing TNT, 119-97, Sunday night in Game 7 of the PBA Season 47 Philippine Cup Finals.
Down by 5 going into the payoff period, the Beermen unleashed a 17-0 run to seize the advantage and take full control of the match. June Mar Fajardo drained a triple in the 1:45 mark of the 4th quarter to give the flagship team of the SMC group their biggest lead, 119-94, which was later answered by Dave Marcelo for the final score.
San Miguel claimed its 10th All-Filipino title to bring the franchise total to 28.
“This show will not be better if not for the entire team, the players. Sila ang hari nitong ligang ito. Sila ang may gawa ng lahat ng ito. Kaya ako ay nagpapasalamat sa kanila dahil nagmukha na naman akong magaling,” said SMB head coach Leo Austria shortly after the game.
“Allow me to congratulate Coach Chot Reyes and the entire Talk ‘N Text for bringing the best in us. Talagang pinag-isip kami, maraming sleepless night,” he added.
First-time champ CJ Perez led the charge for the league’s winningest team with 25 points on 11-of-17 shooting to go with 4 rebounds, 7 assists, a steal and a block in 34 minutes of action.
Fajardo, who was named as the Finals MVP, finished with a double-double of 19 points and 18 boards while Vic Manuel, Marcio Lassiter and Mo Tautuaa chipped in 16, 15 and 13 markers, respectively. Simon Enciso and Chris Ross, who was adjudged as the Best Player of the Game, added 12 points apiece.
The Tropang Giga, who missed the services of their head coach Chot Reyes due to health and safety protocols, were lead by Jayson Castro who still managed to contribute 32 points, 10 rebounds and 8 assists despite playing with a hurting ankle.
Mikey Williams added 22 markers but only 5 came after the first quarter. Roger Pogoy chipped in 16 while Troy Rosario had 11.
San Miguel 119 – Perez 25, Fajardo 19, Manuel 16, Lassiter 15, Tautuaa 13, Enciso 12, Ross 12, Cruz 4, Brondial 3, Canete 0, Faundo 0, Pessumal 0, Zamar 0.
TNT 97 – Castro 32, M. Williams 22, Pogoy 16, Rosario 11, Erram 7, K. Williams 6, Marcelo 3, Montalbo 0, Ganuelas-Rosser 0, Reyes 0, Alejandro 0.
Quarterscores: 29-31, 66-55, 84-89, 119-97.
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