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PBA: Magnolia rips Phoenix, moves closer to ‘On Tour’ sweep


Magnolia pulled away late to beat Phoenix Super LPG, 111-91, and move closer to sweeping the PBA On Tour, Sunday night at the FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.

Joseph Eriobu spearheaded the telling 13-0 run for a 104-84 lead with 3:41 left to play, more than enough for the Hotshots to cruise to the victory after facing a major scare from the Fuel Masters, which led by as much as seven early.

Magnolia posted its 10th win in as many games, and could finish the preseason with a perfect record against Terrafirma on Wednesday in the same venue.

Still, head coach Chito Victolero is doing his best to keep his charges grounded, insisting that the ‘real battle’ will be on the new season opening in October.

“Alam namin sa isip namin — at lagi naming nireremind sa kanila — na this is not the real battle,” he said. “The real battle will be on October.”

“Itong mga small battles na tinatawag ko, kailangan namin ipanalo, kailangan namin mag-compete para malaman namin pagdating ng regular season, we know among ourselves na makakapag-compete kami kahit sinong team.”

Jio Jalalon led the way with 22 points, four rebounds, and nine assists. Veteran guard Mark Barroca provided 19 points, five boards, and five dimes.

Aris Dionisio had 15 points and eight rebounds while Jerrick Ahanmisi chimed in 11 markers in the win, where all but one scored at least two points.

Ahanmisi sank a total of three triples, two of which he made in back-to-back fashion that gave Magnolia the breathing room it needed, 88-80, with 8:18 to go in the final period before sprinting to the finish line shortly after.

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“Kailangan namin ‘yung mga ganyang laro,” said Victolero. “I told them na it’s all about trusting the system, trusting our execution, trusting your teammates. That was the reminder during the fourth quarter. We need to stay composed.”

JJay Alejandro, meanwhile, finished with a game-high 24 points, spiked by six treys, to lead Phoenix, who finished the On Tour with a 3-8 record.

Reden Celda backed him up with 21 markers in the loss, where the Fuel Masters couldn’t sustain the 48-41 lead they held during the second quarter as their foes raced back and took a 55-52 lead at the half — and stayed ahead since.

The Scores:

Magnolia 111 – Jalalon 22, Barroca 19, Dionisio 15, Ahanmisi 11, Eriobu 9, Tratter 9, Dela Rosa 6, Abueva 4, Mendoza 4, Laput 4, Escoto 4, Corpuz 2, Murrell 0.

Phoenix Super LPG 91 – Alejandro 24, Celda 21, Muyang 12, Garcia 9, Mocon 8, Perkins 7, Camacho 4, Fetalvero 3, Rangel 3, Atienza 0.

Quarterscores: 28-18, 55-52, 78-71, 111-91

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.


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