San Miguel storms back to take 2-0 lead vs Phoenix San Miguel storms back to take 2-0 lead vs Phoenix
The Beermen bank on June Mar Fajardo and Marcio Lassiter in the endgame to move two wins away from reaching the Philippine Cup finals... San Miguel storms back to take 2-0 lead vs Phoenix

San Miguel storms back to take 2-0 lead vs Phoenix

The Beermen bank on June Mar Fajardo and Marcio Lassiter in the endgame to move two wins away from reaching the Philippine Cup finals

Published 9:55 PM, April 15, 2019

Updated 9:56 PM, April 15, 2019

STRONG FINISH. June Mar Fajardo and the San Miguel Beermen buck off a slow start to repeat on Phoenix. Photo from PBA Images

MANILA, Philippines – San Miguel battled back from a lethargic start before gutting it out in the endgame to edge Phoenix for a 2-0 lead in the 2019 PBA Philippine Cup semifinals at the Araneta Coliseum on Monday, April 15.

June Mar Fajardo put up 19 points, 18 rebounds and 3 blocks while Marcio Lassiter fired a game-high 24 points to power the Beermen to a come-from-behind 92-82 triumph in the best-of-seven affair.

Buried by as much as 12 points, San Miguel slowly chiseled away at Phoenix’s lead before knotting a score at 63-all heading into the final frame.

It was a dogfight in the payoff period with both teams trading buckets until Lassiter gave the Beermen an 84-80 lead with a resounding three-pointer with two minutes left.

Fajardo then extended San Miguel’s lead with a pair of free throws as Lassiter scored another 4 straight points to seal the win.

Although now two wins away from reaching the finals, Beermen head coach Leo Austria does not want his wards to relax.

“0-2 is not assurance to win the series. We should play hard,” he said.

Calvin Abueva paced the Fuel Masters with 16 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals and 2 blocks but committed 7 turnovers and fouled out with a minute left to play.

Both teams will get a week of break before tangling again in Game 3 on Sunday, April 21, at the same venue.

The Scores

San Miguel 92 – Lassiter 24, Fajardo 19, Romeo 14, Cabagnot 8, Pessumal 8, Santos 7, Ross 7, Tubid 3, Standhardinger 2, Rosser 0, Nabong 0,

Phoenix 82 – Abueva 16, Wright 13, Perkins 12, Chua 12, Jazul 12, Mallari 8, Intal 4, Marcelo 2, Kramer 2, Mendoza 1.

Quarters: 13-21, 37-46, 63-63, 92-82.

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