WATCH: San Miguel vs Blackwater Game Highlights [PBA S48 Comm’s Cup | Jan. 12, 2024]

San Miguel welcomed the return of June Mar Fajardo with a 125-117 win over Blackwater that gave the former its coveted incentive in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Bennie Boatwright led the Beermen with 44 points and 12 rebounds and got the much-needed help from the likes of Fajardo, Chris Ross, Don Trollano and Jericho Cruz in the endgame to put away the pesky Bossing.

Its fifth straight win to end the eliminations gave SMB an 8-3 record and made it the third team after Magnolia and Phoenix Super LPG to secure a top four finish and a twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals.

For coach Jorge Gallent, it was merely another step closer to SMB’s ultimate goal. “This is just our first ladder,” he said.

“Our first goal was to get into the top four for the twice-to-beat advantage, and we did that. So now we have to work on our quarterfinal stint. As of now we don’t know who we’ll play but we have to prepare against the team we will play in the quarterfinals,” added Gallent.

“So, this five-game winning streak is out already. This is ladder one, so we’re going to ladder two now.”

As usual, Fajardo should prove to be a vital cog in SMB’s continuing drive by notching 11 points, nine rebounds, six assists, a steal, and a block while showing little ill effects of the hand injury that sidelined him for six games.

One Sports
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