Behind Juami Tiongson's career game, Terrafirma stuns SMB

Juami Tiongson sizzled for Terrafirma in front of CJ Perez and his new team San Miguel. PBA Images
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Ahead of the Terrafirma-San Miguel game, all the talk was on CJ Perez's first game against his former team.

But it was Juami Tiongson who stole the spotlight.

Tiongson came alive for the Dyip on Wednesday, putting up a career-high to lead them to a huge 110-104 upset of the Beermen in their PBA Philippine Cup clash at the Don Honorio Ventura State University Gym in Bacolor.

Playing without its last two top picks, Roosevelt Adams and Joshua Munzon, Terrafirma banked on a 28-point blast from Tiongson as it finally notched its first win of the season.

SMB came alive in the third quarter, outscoring Terrafirma, 35-19, to open a 75-61 lead entering the fourth quarter.

The Beermen would sustain the lead in the early goings of the fourth, stretching it a bit to 15, 83-68, with 9:12 left in the said quarter.

But Tiongson went to work from there, finding Andreas Cahilig open for the three, converting a layup, and assisting on two more baskets to eventually trim the lead to just six, 86-80, with 6:38 remaining in regulation.

Back-to-back layups from Chris Ross put SMB back up by 10, 90-80, with 4:53 to play, but off a timeout, Terrafirma tallied eight straight points behind back-to-back Tiongson triples to cut the lead down to just two, 90-88, with 3:12 to go in regulation.

Tiongson then eventually forced overtime when his jumper tied the count at 95-all with 44 seconds left.

June Mar Fajardo actually had a chance to give the Beermen the lead, but he missed on two clutch free throws.

Tiongson also got an outright crack at winning the game for the Dyip in regulation, but he muffed a three-pointer as time expired.

In the overtime session, Terrafirma pulled away from SMB after going on a 13-5 run that broke the last logjam of the game at 97-all.

Tiongson also had seven assists, three rebounds, and three steals as the Dyip left the Blackwater Bossing, who lost to the TNT Tropang Giga in the first game, as the remaining winless team this conference.

Aldrech Ramos added 17 points, eight rebounds, and one assist, while Eric Camson (13 points and 10 rebounds) and Joseph Gabayni (11 points and 15 rebounds) each tallied double-doubles off the bench.

Terrence Romeo also had 28 points alongside six rebounds, six assists, two steals, and one block for the Beermen, who fell to 3-2.

Fajardo, playing for the first time since the passing of his mom, added 18 points, 12 rebounds, three assists, and three blocks.

Perez struggled against his former team as he was held to just 10 points, three rebounds, two assists, and one steal off the bench.

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