Air21 forces SMB into winner-take-all
MANILA, Philippines – Air21 gave San Miguel Beer a 92-79 thrashing on Tuesday to force a do-or-die in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup playoffs.
The Beermen came into the match with a twice-to-beat advantage over the Express, but it didn’t matter after Air21’s Sean Anthony unloaded 25 points against San Miguel.
The Express also got 18 points from import Wesley Witherspoon and 17 from Asi Taulava.
Air21 vindicated its 85-93 loss to San Miguel Beer last Holy Wednesday, when the Beermen got hold of the number two spot in the playoffs.
The Beermen again found trouble connecting their shots until late in the fourth quarter where they mounted a fightback.
But Taulava and Witherspoon held off the incursion by scoring crucial baskets down the stretch.
Kevin Jones paced the Beermen with 34 points. Chris Lutz and Arwind Santos were the only other players who came up with double digits by scoring 11 and 10 respectively.
Air21 and San Miguel will meet again on Friday.
Air21 92 -- Anthony 25, Witherspoon 18, Taulava 17, Poligrates 11, Yeo 10, Ramos 5, Borboran 2, Villanueva 2, Cardona 2, Burtscher 0, Camson 0.
San Miguel Beer 79 -- Jones 34, Lutz 11, Santos 10, Ross 9, Mercado 5, Fajardo 5, Maierhofer 2, Lassiter 2, Hubalde 1, Duncil 0, Tubid 0, Kramer 0.
Quarterscores: 29-20; 45-34; 63-54; 92-79