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Alaska punishes GlobalPort in wire-to-wire Game 4 win



It is safe to say that Game One of this series is nothing more than a long and distant memory.

After dropping Game One of this semifinals series, the Alaska Aces are now just one win away from their second straight Philippine Cup Finals. The Red-and-Black squad blasted the GlobalPort Batang Pier 109-84 in a wire-to-wire victory Sunday evening at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

Contrary to the first three games of this series, it was Alaska who started out strong this time and established a big lead early on. The Aces started Dondon Hontiveros and Ping Exciminiano, who both contributed productively, as their team raced to a quick 17-8 lead.

Despite the offensive-filled atmosphere, Alaska tried to make anyone from the GlobalPort team to beat them except Terrence Romeo, who they clamped on defensively. After one period, the first-seeded Aces were already up by a dozen.

Aces kept the pace in their favor behind Calvin Abueva leading their second quarter attack. Alaska surged ahead by double digits for majority of the period. GlobalPort managed to slice the lead down to eight, but Dondon Hontiveros and JVee Casio combined for the quarter’s last eight points to propel the Aces to a 14-point cushion at the break.

Jay Washington and Stanley Pringle managed to string up points and cut the lead down to seven at 56-49 during the third canto. However, Alaska responded behind back-to-back threes by Cyrus Baguio, which restored a double-digit cushion. As momentum drew to Alaska’s favor, the Aces maintained the big gap until the end of the match. Romeo tried to carry the team, but too much firepower from different players from the Aces gave the latter a comfortable 82-62 margin after three.

Romeo and Pringle each drained a three-ball to try and salvage their team against the big hole put up by Alaska. However, their team’s defense has been a suspect throughout the game, while Alaska made baskets to counter the runs and sustain their advantage. Jazul and Manuel highlighted the period with back-to-back threes and a breakaway jam to put the exclamation point, respectively.

Almost everyone Coach Compton brought in scored for the game except for big men Sonny Thoss and seldom-utilized giant Samigue Eman. National team standout Calvin Abueva led all Aces with 20 points and 14 boards. “The Beast” was also 9/14 from the field.

“Isa pang laro para makuha namin finals,” Abueva said after the game. “Pasalamat lang ako sa teammates ko kasi suportahan talaga kami para maabutan yung championship.”

“Continue lang sa focus. Mental(toughness) talaga kami dito and shooters nila focus namin para di maka galaw sa opensa,” closed Abueva as he looks forward to closing this series.

Fellow Gilas teammate Dondon Hontiveros added 16 markers on an excellent 50% shooting clip and knocking down three triples as well. The Aces’ backcourt also played well with RJ Jazul and Chris Banchero combining for 24 points.

For the Green-and-Black squad, Terrence Romeo again led the way for his team with 24 points. However, he was just 9/21 from the field and a horrendous 3/11 from downtown. The other half of the “Slash Brothers,” Stanley Pringle, was limited to just 16 points on an equally horrible 31% field goal percentage. Jay Washington added 12 points and eight boards.

Unlike in Game Three of this series, the Alaska Aces were more judicious in their shot selection in shooting 50% from the field and 48% from three-point range. The Aces were able to assist on 24 of their 31 field goals and was able to score 48 points from inside and 36 points from the outside. On the other end, they were able to force Globalport to just 40% from the field and commit 16 turnovers that led to 14 turnover points.

Game Five of the series will be played on Tuesday, January 12 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Scores:
Alaska (109) – Abueva 20, Hontiveros 16, Jazul 14, Banchero 10, Dela Rosa 9, Casio 8, Manuel 8, Baguio 8, Exciminiano 7, Baclao 4, Menk 3, Dela Cruz 2, Eman 0, Thoss 0.
GlobalPort (84) – Romeo 24, Pringle 16, Washington 12, Yeo 8, Isip 6, Sumang 6, Kramer 4, Maierhofer 2, Semerad 2, Pena 2, Jensen 2, Uyloan 0, Mamaril 0, Hayes 0.
Quarterscores: 32-20, 54-40, 82-62, 109-84.

Videos courtesy of Sports5