|Rafi Reavis flashed his vintage form again. Dennis Acosta|
By Xy-Zha Cabanlong
QUEZON CITY—It was as if the series is to end at Game 3 when Magnolia took on San Miguel before a huge crowd at the Araneta Coliseum, Sunday night.
The Hotshots commanded the ball game after trailing in the first quarter, eventually winning, 86-82, proving that they wanted the win more than the Beermen.
The early minutes of the first quarter was a close fight for both teams that even featured not just one, but five deadlocks before the Beermen wera able to sail away to tally a 24-21 lead at the buzzer.
It was Jio Jalalon's basket at 9:40 left to play in the second quarter that set the pace for the Hotshots, taking the lead, 25-24.
Aldrech Ramos followed it up with a three point play as he was fouled by Matt Ganuelas-Rosser while taking a shot.
Off these plays, Magnolia was able to sail away and never looked back, leading against San Miguel; 45-36 at the end of first half.
The second half put Mark Barroca in the spotlight with him scoring the last 5 points for the Hotshots.
With 1:20 left in the third, Terrence Romeo fired a triple on which Barroca answered back with his own version.
As if it was not enough, Barroca scored an easy basket for Magnolia with only 45 seconds left to play in the third.
Magnolia ended the 3rd with a safe 8-point lead, 66-58.
Paul Lee opened up the scoring for the final salvo of the game, leading the Hotshots to safety, 68-58.
The dying minutes of the 4th period had been the most intense beginning with Arwind Santos shooting a putback off a teammate's miss with only 23 seconds left to play.
Santos was able to cut Magnolia's lead to only 5, 81-76.
Jalalon extended the lead to 6, 82-76 off a split from a foul by Marcio Lassiter with 21 seconds left in the game and eventually sealed the win.
Magnolia walked away leading the finals series; 2-1.
Rafi Reavis was named as the best player of the game with 16 points and 15 rebounds.
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