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Magnolia seals PBA Comm's Cup Finals date vs SMB after holding off Phoenix in semis clincher

Tyler Bey's 20-20 helped Magnolia enter the PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals. Dennis Acosta
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—It's Magnolia versus San Miguel in the PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals.

The Hotshots sealed their place in the championship series after beating the Phoenix Fuel Masters, 89-79, in Game 4 of their semifinal affair on Wednesday night at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.

Magnolia once again let go of an early huge lead and nearly squandered a larger cushion early in the fourth quarter, but they prevailed this time.

The Hotshots raced to a 29-16 lead at the end of the first quarter, but the Fuel Masters slowly crawled back and cut the lead down to two, 53-51, with less than seven minutes left in the third quarter.

Magnolia tried to pull away anew after going on a 21-2 run to open a 74-53 lead with nine minutes left in the fourth quarter.

Phoenix tried one final dash and trimmed the gap to nine, 83-74, with 2:36 remaining, but crucial baskets from Ian Sangalang and Tyler Bey to save the plays for Magnolia eventually sealed the win.

Mark Barroca led the Hotshots with 21 points, four rebounds, and five assists, while Bey added 20 points, 20 rebounds, four assists, one block, and two steals.

Johnathan Williams led the Fuel Masters, who made the conference semifinals for the second time in their history, with 17 points, 17 rebounds, five assists, three blocks, and two steals.

Game 1 of the San Miguel-Magnolia series is on Friday night back at the MOA Arena.

Follow him on X: @IvanSaldajeno

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