Magnolia Hotshots’ Mark Barroca drives past Scottie Thompson of Barangay Ginebra in their quarterfinal game last night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
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Beermen, Kings take Game 1
Nelson Beltran (The Philippine Star) - April 7, 2019 - 12:00am

Games today (MOA Arena)

4:30 p.m. – Rain or Shine vs NorthPort

6:45 p.m. – Phoenix Pulse vs Alaska

MANILA, Philippines — Effectively neutralized in the first 46 minutes of the game, June Mar Fajardo showed his MVP stuffs in the last two minutes to lift San Miguel Beer past TNT KaTropa, 80-78, in the opener of their PBA Philippine Cup best-of-three quarterfinals showdown at the MOA Arena last night.

Fajardo grabbed big offensive rebounds and scored all of the game’s last five points as the Beermen overcame the tough stand of the KaTropa who took control most of the way only to slow down in the final canto.

Still, the KaTropa had their chance to salvage the game, but RR Pogoy missed a make-or-break three-point attempt at the buzzer.

And thus the Beermen moved within a game of the Final Four of the tourney where they’re chasing a five straight championship. They shoot for the clincher at 7 p.m. tomorrow over at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

With Fajardo’s roll at the finish, the reigning five-time MVP was able to finish with a mini double-double game with 15 points and 10 rebounds.

Before Fajardo came through, guards Terrence Romeo, Marcio Lassiter and Alex Cabagnot bore the brunt for the Beermen, erasing TNT’s 12-point lead as they surged ahead at 75-71 entering the last four minutes of the contest.

Romeo came up with 15 markers, two rebounds, two assists and one steal in his first faceoff with his former team.

Later in the night, Barangay Ginebra drew first blood in its own quarterfinals series with Magnolia as the Kings broke away in the second quarter and went on to drub the Hotshots, 86-75.

The Kings pummeled the Hotshots, 27-9, in the second period and sustained the effort through the final half to stop Magnolia’s three-game charge in the tourney.

Ginebra dominated Magnolia in the last three quarters behind a well-balanced game that saw five Kings score in double figures, led by Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar who both ended with double-double numbers.

Slaughter collected 15 points and 12 rebounds while Aguilar tallied 12 markers and 11 boards.

The scores: 

First Game

San Miguel 80 – Lassiter 15, Fajardo 15, Romeo 15, Cabagnot 12, Santos 8, Ross 6, Standahrdinger 5, Rosser 2, Pessumal 2, Nabong 0.

TNT 78 – Rosario 23, Pogoy 16, Trollano 11, Williams 9, Taha 8, Castro 8, Reyes 2, A. Semerad 1, Carey 0, Heruela 0, D. Semerad 0, Washington 0.

Quarterscores: 13-22, 39-46, 60-65, 80-78

Second Game

Ginebra 86 – Slaughter 15, Dela Cruz 14, Thompson 12, Aguilar 12, Tenorio 10, Ferrer 8, Chan 6, Mariano 4, Mercado 3, Caperal 2, Cruz 0.

Magnolia 75 – Lee 15, Sangalang 14, Brondial 11, Ramos 10, Melton 10, Dela Rosa 6, Jalalon 4, Barroca 3, Reavis 2, Pascual 0, Herndon 0, Abundo 0.

Quarterscores: 17-18, 44-27, 62-47, 86-75

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