Devon Scott came up with a much better performance than in his debut and his teammates followed suit as San Miguel Beer snapped out of its rut with a 124-116 win over NLEX Sunday in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.
In stark contrast to his 16-point debut on just a 7-of-18 field shooting just last Friday, Scott this time notched 26 points after making half of his 20 shots and also pulled down 10 rebounds and dished off seven assists while being plagued by foul trouble.
The biggest help were the 22 points apiece by Marcio Lassiter and Vic Manuel as the Beermen cut short a two-game slide that started with the sidelining of June Mar Fajardo and improved to a 2-4 record overall.
Manuel, in particular, was at his best after Don Trollano’s triple moved the Road Warriors within 109-112, scoring four points during a critical 8-0 run that gave the Beermen a 120-109 separation and effectively took the fight out of NLEX going to the last two minutes of play.
CJ Perez, Jericho Cruz and Mo Tautuaa also provided ample support by combining for 45 points as SMB gained some momentum going to its next outing against NorthPort on Wednesday.
“It’s a matter of mindset for the players. I kept on telling them that we have to fight. There’s no more June Mar so we cannot dwell on him and that’s what happened,” said SMB coach Leo Austria, adding Scott’s energy rubbed off on his local teammates.
“I think because of the import, ‘yung sipag niya, he keeps on running up and down… so it’s enough to motivate the players,” offered Austria. “I’m happy for the win. It’s a must-win for us,” added Austria.