Arwind Santos drained a mid-range jumper with 1.2 seconds left on the game clock to give San Miguel the lead, 88-86, and eventually the win over a hard-fighting NorthPort side in the elimination round of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup, Sunday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
The 40-year old Santos’ game-winner came after a crucial technical foul was slapped on him by game officials after an elbow to the head of Sidney Onwubere. Robert Bolick canned the freebie to equalize the count at 86-all.
The 2nd overall pick of the 2006 draft, who was adjudged as the Best Player of the game, finished with 17 points, 5 boards and 3 rejections.
“Ako hindi ko iniisip kung ano na edad ko ngayon. Ang iniisip ko kung paano pa rin ako makakapag-contribute sa mga kabataan ng magagaling ngayon,” said Santos during the post-game presser.
CJ Perez paced the Beermen with 18 points while Alex Cabagnot and Mo Tautuaa contributed 16 and 11 markers, respectively. June Mar Fajardo chipped in 8 points, 7 rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block in 25 minutes of action.
“I hope this momentum magtuloy-tuloy na because we have another game on Wednesday and after Blackwater we have two big teams, Ginebra and Magnolia,” said SMB head coach Leo Austria.
“This (win) is badly needed and I’m happy na we snatched this game dahil this could give us some momentum going to the next three games,” he added.