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Magnolia waxes hot in the second half to turn back GlobalPort

Rome Dela Rosa posted career numbers again for Magnolia. PBA Media Bureau
By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY--Magnolia snapped its two-game slide in style, blasting GlobalPort, 96-81, in the main game of the Chinese New Year offering of the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Friday night.

Slowed down by the Batang Pier in the first half, the Hotshots got their rhythm going in the third quarter, scoring 35 points, more than their entire output at halftime, and took a 69-61 lead heading to the fourth. They completed the pummeling in the final canto with a 27-point output.

Rome Dela Rosa played his best game with the Purefoods franchise with a career-high 18 points, four rebounds, one assist, and two steals off the bench.

Justin Melton and Ian Sangalang each chipped in 14 markers for Magnolia, which moved up to second place at 7-3 and further complicated the race for the twice-to-beat advantages in the playoffs ahead of a showdown between Alaska and San Miguel, the other two teams in the Top 2 running, at the Batangas City Sports Center in Batangas City on Saturday night.

Paul Lee returned to action and made 13 points, three caroms, three dimes, and one block.

Kelly Nabong led GlobalPort, which fell to a tie with Blackwater, a 95-76 winner over Kia in the first game, and Phoenix for seventh place at 4-5, with 21 points, 12 boards, and one assist in a game where Stanley Pringle was limited to only five markers.

Box Scores:

Magnolia 96-Dela Rosa 18, Melton 14, Sangalang 14, Lee 13, Barroca 12, Ramos 11, Pingris 6, Jalalon 5, Simon 2, Reavis 1, Herndon 0, Brondial 0

GlobalPort 81-Nabong 21, Grey 13, Anthony 12, Teng 12, Pringle 5, Arana 5, Gabayni 4, Sargent 3, Elorde 2, Flores 2, Taha 2, Juico 0, Guinto 0

Quarterscores: 17-22, 34-39, 69-61, 96-81

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