NorthPort avoided a collapse and downed the Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters, 80-70, to end their four-game losing skid in the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup, Saturday at SMART Araneta Coliseum.
The Batang Pier were quick to seize control of the match following an early 26-12 lead early, but the Fuel Masters fought back and snatched the lead, 61-60, with 9:10 left in the final frame.
They then quickly recovered, as Paolo Taha made a triple to spark an 8-0 run en route to a 68-61 lead. The Batang Pier never looked back afterwards, and even led by 12, 80-68, thanks to Kevin Ferrer with 24.1 ticks left.
NorthPort not only ended its skid in the season-ending conference, but also its struggles versus Phoenix Pulse. The Batang Pier were 0-5 versus the Fuel Masters prior to Saturday’s meeting.
“‘Di pa kami nanalo since last season, kaya it’s about time na manalo naman tayo,” said coach Pido Jarencio. “At the same time, ‘yung confidence ng mga player bumalik na kahit papaano.”
Mo Tautuaa led the Batang Pier with 16 points, nine rebounds, and four assists in the win that hiked their card at 2-4.
Mychal Ammons supplied 12 points, six rebounds, two assists, and two steals. Taha produced 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting, while Garvo Lanete added 11 markers built on three triples.
Alex Mallari had 15 points to top-score Phoenix Pulse, which has fallen to 2-5 in the team standings.
Import Eugene Phelps was limited scoring-wise but nearly had a triple-double with 14 points, 14 rebounds, and eight assists. Jason Perkins added 10 markers and 10 boards in the loss.
NorthPort will next face the San Miguel Beermen (4-0) on October 23, Wednesday, at the Cuneta Astrodome. Meanwhile, Phoenix Pulse takes on the Columbian Dyip (3-2) on October 25, Friday, at SMART Araneta Coliseum.
NorthPort 80 – Tautuaa 16, Taha 14, Ammons 12, Lanete 11, Elorde 9, Ferrer 8, Bolick 5, Cruz 4, Anthony 1, Mercado 0, Escoto 0, King 0.
Phoenix 70 – Mallari 15, Phelps 14, Perkins 10, Garcia 9, Napoles 8, Jazul 6, Chua 2, Kramer 2, Marcelo 2, Dennison 2, Wright 0, Potts 0,
Quarterscores: 17-8, 38-31, 58-55, 80-70.