Blackwater claims first-ever PBA win, blasts SMB in upset

By Josh Castro

Blackwater finally notched a win in its first PBA season, and it came in style.

The Elite pulled off a stunning 80-77 win against the San Miguel Beermen at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, keeping the reigning Philippine Cup champions winless.

Blackwater outscored San Miguel, 22-8, in the third quarter to take a 60-52 lead.

The Beermen, however, opened the fourth quarter with a 9-0 run to reclaim the advantage, 61-60, and eventually increase it to three, 71-68, later in the period.

The Elite crawled back anew and used a 10-1 rally to go up, 78-72, with 1:15 remaining.

San Miguel still pulled up a trick from its sleeves as free throws from Alex Cabagnot and a triple from Ronald Tubid pushed their team to within one, 77-78, with 36 seconds left.

Then, the Beermen's defense forced Robby Celiz to a difficult shot that he missed. Gilbert Bulawan, however, grabbed the offensive rebound and converted the follow-up as the Elite stretched the gap to three with 10.6 seconds remaining.

San Miguel had one more chance to stay in the game, but the team misfired last-second triples that could have forced overtime.

Marcus Douthit made 20 points, 12 rebounds, and four blocks to lead Blackwater, which became only the second team to clinch a PBA D-League title. Blackwater went winless in the Philippine Cup.