San Juan, Pampanga in semis
John Bryan Ulanday (The Philippine Star) - February 22, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Reigning champion San Juan-Go For Gold and fourth-seed Pampanga-ADG Group of Companies booted out their respective foes to arrange an exciting North Division semifinals in the Chooks-to-Go/MPBL Lakan Season last Thursday at the AUF Gym. 

The No.1 Northern squad, San Juan was once again pushed to the limit by Pasay before eking out a 74-67 Game 2 win while Pampanga squeaked past 1Bataan-Camaya Coast, 83-80.

Both squads completed a 2-0 quarterfinals sweep to set-up a best-of-three semis showdown for a chance to advance to the North Division finale. 

John Wilson lifted San Juan with his 17 points and 16 rebounds while Jhonard Clarito and Orlan Wamar stepped up with 13 and 10, respectively, in the absence of veteran anchor Larry Rodriguez after his ejection midway through the final canto on two technical fouls. 

“We may have lost Larry late in the game but good thing was our bench guys delivered. They proved their readiness. Our character was in full display in the end game. We’ll need that (character) deeper in the playoffs,” said San Juan tactician Randy Alcantara. 

Like its nail-biting 75-74 victory in the opener, the Knights had difficulty shrugging off the Voyagers as the game was knotted at 62 in the last two minutes before Wilson took charge.

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