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NorthPort revives PBA Comm's Cup playoff push, mauls skidding NLEX

Robert Bolick exploded anew as the Batang Pier are back on track  in the playoff hunt. Dennis Acosta
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—NorthPort found itself back in the thick of things for a spot in the PBA Commissioner's Cup quarterfinals after drubbing NLEX, 107-94, in a must-win elimination round game for both teams on Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

Behind their main men Robert Bolick and Prince Ibeh as well as rookie William Navarro, the Batang Pier checked their three-game slide by quickly zapping the life out of the Road Warriors, who are now on their own three-game losing streak.

NorthPort held NLEX to just 13 points in the first quarter, and the latter struggled to get back on track for the remainder of the game even as the former led by as high as 24 points, 100-76, midway in the fourth quarter.

Bolick finished with 33 points, 12 rebounds, and seven assists to lead the Batang Pier, who jumped to seventh place in the standings at 4-5.

Ibeh added 22 points on 9-for-10 shooting, 17 rebounds, one assist, and six blocks, while Navarro chipped in 17 points, 13 rebounds, two assists, and two steals in his first PBA win.

Earl Clark finished with 29 points, 15 rebounds, six assists, one block, and two steals for the Road Warriors, who fell to ninth place at 3-5.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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