Dragons cruise past Fajardo-less Beermen

After a demoralizing lopsided loss to Brgy. Ginebra, Bay Area vented its ire on a June Mar Fajardo-less San Miguel and routed the defending champions by 26, 113-87, Sunday in the elimination round of the PBA Season 47 Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

The Beermen trailed by as much as 30 points enroute to their 2nd loss in 3 starts while the Dragons picked up their 5th win against a solitary defeat.

Andrew Nicholson led the guest team with 39 points to go with 12 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and a block in 37 minutes of action.

“We learned from the loss which was nice to see. We got better against a quality team. Really happy with tonight’s performance,” said Bay Area coach Brian Goorjian during the post-game press conference.

“They definitely missed him [Fajardo]. But they’ve got enough there for us to feel good about beating a team of that quality without him.”

Fajardo hurt his throat after getting an inadvertent elbow from Rain or Shine import Steve Taylor. He just had surgery and will be out for 4 to 6 weeks.

CJ Perez led the Beermen with 19 points in addition to 9 boards and 6 assists. Vic Manuel added 15 in 19 minutes of play.

SMB import Diamond Stone was a disappointment as the NBA G League veteran could only come up with 11 points on 5-of-18 shooting including 0-of-7 from beyond the arc. He grabbed 14 rebounds, issued 5 assists, blocked 1 shot, stole the ball once and committed 3 turnovers in a performance which was heavily frowned upon by the team’s supporters.

Simon Enciso and Moala Tautuaa chipped in 9 markers apiece while Jericho Cruz and Marcio Lassiter contributed 8 and 7 points, respectively.

The Beermen will have a 4-day break and will try to redeem themselves when they take on the Converge FiberXers on Friday, October 21, 5:45pm at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.

The scores:

Bay Area 113 – Nicholson 39, Blankley 17, Zhu 16, Lam 16, Liu 12, Reid 6, Song 3, Ju 2, Ewing 2, Zheng 0, Yang 0, Si 0, Liang 0.

San Miguel 87 – Perez 19, Manuel 15, Stone 11, Enciso 9, Tautuaa 9, Cruz 8, Lassiter 7, Brondial 4, Zamar 3, Ross 2, Herndon 0, Canete 0.

Quarterscores: 28-17, 58-40, 86-58, 113-87.

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