Magnolia clinches quarterfinal slot, wards off SMB

Photo courtesy of PBA
Photo courtesy of PBA

Magnolia punched a ticket to the quarterfinals after edging San Miguel Beer, 85-80, in the Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner's Cup Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Timplados Hotshots rode on the shoulders of guards Mark Barroca and Paul Lee as they towed their team to their eighth win in nine games.

Barroca delivered when it mattered most for the Hotshots, drilling in 10 of his 12 points in the second half.

Lee knocked in 14 markers, including two crucial three-point shots and two charities in the final minute and 30 seconds of the fourth canto, which sealed the deal for the Hotshots.

Magnolia had kept a hold of the solo lead in the league standings, but were not far ahead of Bay Area and Converge, which both carry 8-2 win-loss records.

Magnolia's win sent the reigning Philippine Cup champion to a skid, as the Beermen absorbed its fifth loss in eight games and dropped to the 10th spot in the standings. 

The Scores:

MAGNOLIA 85 – Rakocevic 26, Lee 14, Sangalang 12, Barroca 12, Jalalon 6, Abueva 5, Wong 4, Dela Rosa 2, Corpuz 2, Ahanmisi 2, Laput 0, Dionisio 0

SAN MIGUEL 80 – Scott 19, Lassiter 16, Perez 16, Manuel 16, Tautuaa 6, Ross 3, Herndon 2, Brondial 2, Enciso 0, Cruz 0

QUARTERS: 23-25, 37-37, 65-60, 85-80

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