MANILA, Philippines – Barako Bull got a much-needed boost from its locals in disposing Air21, 109-100, on Wednesday’s PBA Governors Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Amid the scoring match between imports Leroy Hickerson of Barako and Air21’s Zach Graham, locals Mick Pennisi, Doug Kramer and Leo Najorda also churned out points to secure Barako’s 2nd straight win in 5 games.
According to PBA.ph, Graham outshot Hickerson 41 to 38. (http://www.pba.ph/news/entry/1638)
Graham also tallied a game-high 17 rebounds plus 3 assists and 2 steals.
|Barako Bull import Leroy Hickerson lords it over Air21 defenders during
their PBA Governors Cup match. Barako Bull eventually defeated Air21, 109-100.
Photo by Marc John Villanueva for ABS-CBNnews.com
But his effort was offset by Barako's balanced attack as 8 of the Energy’s local players scored at least 6 points each.
Despite the win, Barako Bull coach Junel Baculi was far from satisfied. He said his team gave up a total 92 field attempts to the Express.
"We cannot outshoot every opponent in this league. We're not that strong offensively. We have to change our state of mind about it," he said.
He also noted that Barako was outrebounded by Air21, 51 to 58.
"I got mad in the dugout during halftime because we were outrebounded even though we're taller than them," said Baculi.
Veterans Pennisi and Willie Miller provided timely back-up for Hickerson especially during the second half.
Pennisi sank in three straight triples during the third period to push Barako to a 69-55 advantage.
Miller made all his first four shots from the field in the fourth quarter, hiking the Energy’s lead to 98-84 with 5:41 remaining.
Barako’s balanced scoring resulted in Air21's fourth loss in five games.
Barako Bull 109 - Hickerson 38, Pennisi 14, Kramer 10, Najorda 9, Cruz 9, Miller 8, Allado 8, Cervantes 7, Tubid 6, Weinstein 0, Sharma 0.
Air21 100 - Graham 41, Sena 16, Isip 11, Omolon 10, Hubalde 6, Salamat 5, Arboleda 5, Espiritu 4, Menor 2, Sison 0, Faundo 0, Ritualo 0.
Quarterscores: 33-23, 53-47, 80-69, 109-100.