Fuel Masters smother Road Warriors in 35-point rout

Ralph Edwin Villanueva - Philstar.com
Fuel Masters smother Road Warriors in 35-point rout
Phoenix's RJ Jazul
PBA Images

MANILA, Philippines -- The Phoenix Fuel Masters blasted the sluggish NLEX Road Warriors to their second-worst defeat in franchise history, 112-77, Saturday at the Ynares Arena in Pasig City, giving the Road Warriors their second straight loss in the PBA Philippine Cup.

RJ Jazul provided the spark for Phoenix, finishing with 19 points, four rebounds and four assists. All of his made field goals came from beyond the arc.

The Fuel Masters simply got hot early on, turning a 24-17 advantage at the end of the first quarter to a 20-point lead, 48-28, in the second quarter with a trey by Jazul.

The Road Warriors were able to cut the deficit to just eight, 46-54, in the third quarter with a triple by Anthony Semerad.

However, Phoenix was just too good, building the lead up to 18 anew, 72-54, with a three-point play by Jason Perkins.

The victors kept their foot on the gas pedal as they led by as much as 39 points, 110-71, with an and-one play by Ricci Rivero.

The 35-point defeat is the second-worst loss of the Road Warriors, just behind the 36-point drubbing of NLEX against Barangay Ginebra in 2018, 111-75, league chief statistician Fidel Mangonon III said.

The same spread is also the biggest win margin of the Fuel Masters in franchise history in the All-Filipino conference.

Ken Tuffin seconded Jazul’s scoring output with 17 points, seven rebounds, two steals and two assists.

Jjay Alejandro also had 16 markers, while Kent Salado and Perkins chipped in 11 and 10, respectively.

Rookie Enoch Valdez spearheaded the Road Warriors 16 points, nine rebounds and two assists. Jhan Nermal added 12, while Semerad, Dominick Fajardo, Baser Amer and Robert Bolick all had 11 markers.

Phoenix is now holding a 3-5 win-loss record, just outside the playoff picture, while NLEX dropped to 5-3.

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