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SMB escapes Meralco's 2nd half push, goes 2-0

Alex Cabagnot exploded for 29 markers. PBA Media Bureau
By Ivan Saldajeno

ANTIPOLO—San Miguel withstood a late Meralco run to escape with a 103-97 win to go 2-0 in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Ynares Center on Wednesday night.

The Beermen were up, 55-33, late in the first half as Marcio Lassiter and Alex Cabagnot sizzled early on.

Mike Tolomia, however, caught fire in the third quarter as the Bolts came to within four, 57-61, opening the quarter on a 16-2 run.

SMB stayed afloat especially when Junemar Fajardo imposed his will inside in the fourth quarter as the lead was back to 10, 102-92, with 1:26 left.

Meralco still put up a fight as five straight points cut the lead down to five, 102-97, with 33.1 seconds to go even as the team forced a huge stop for a chance to inch closer.

However, KG Canaleta misfired a crucial trey as the ball rolled out of the rim, somehow sealing the fate of both squads.

Cabagnot and Fajardo finished with 29 and 26 points respectively for the Beermen, who tied the NLEX Road Warriors at the top of the team standings.

Tolomia ended up with 21 points, all in the second half including 15 in the third period, for Meralco, which fell to 1-1.

Box Scores: 

San Miguel 103-Cabagnot 29, Fajardo 26, Lassiter 18, Pessumal 11, Ross 9, Santos 8, Mamaril 2, Lanete 0, Heruela 0, Rosser 0

Meralco 97-Tolomia 21, Canaleta 17, Hugnatan 16, Newsome 13, Lanete 10, Bono 8, Amer 7, Baracael 2, Ballesteros 2, Caram 1, Faundo 0, Sedurifa 0, Salva 0

Quarterscores: 30-18, 59-41, 81-73, 103-97

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno