Phoenix in 51-point rout

Olmin Leyba - The Philippine Star
Phoenix in 51-point rout
Sean Manganti and Jason Perkins of Phoenix engage Joshua Munzon of Terrafirma in a battle for the rebound in the Fuel Masters’ 51-point rout at the PhilSports Arena last night.
PBA Images

MANILA, Philippines — Roaring back to life after a three-game slide, Phoenix clobbered an all-Filipino Terrafirma, 135-84, to give itself a good shot at the PBA Commissioner’s Cup playoffs with its 6-6 card yesterday at the PhilSports Arena.

With the Dyip’s injury-hit crew further decimated by Lester Prosper’s sit out due to health protocols, the Fuel Masters quickly pounced and blazed to the fifth most lopsided first half in PBA history, 67-30, to set the tone for this vital and comprehensive win.

Phoenix stayed in seventh spot and now waits as the other pursuers make their final push for the contested Final-8 berths in the last three playdates of the elims.

“What’s good about this is we’re in a better place,” said coach Topex Robinson after wrapping up a roller-coaster elims that saw them start at 0-3, go on a five-game tear, and skid in the next three before closing out with a 51-point demolition job.

Phoenix surpassed its previous largest winning margin of 41 (132-91 over NorthPort in the 2018 Governors’ Cup) while matching its highest output of 135, first achieved in a 27-point rout of Globalport in 2018.

The Dyip, 1-11 overall, absorbed their second worst loss of the franchise after their 54-point beating by Bay Area just last Oct. 21.

Later, defending champion San Miguel vaulted to fifth at 6-5 while booting out short-handed TNT (4-8) with a 119-99 conquest.

Meanwhile, the big guns led by TNT came out firing to lead the qualifiers to the PBA 3x3 Second Conference Leg 4 quarterfinals yesterday at Robinsons Malabon.

Leg 3’s podium finishers – winner TNT (Pool A), runner-up Cavitex (Pool B) and Meralco (Pool C) – together with Leg 2 ruler J&T Express (Pool D) posted 2-0 marks.


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