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The Alaska Aces used a balanced attack to defeat a hard-fighting Barako Bull side, 77-73, and grab the solo lead in the Commissioner’s Cup Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Robert Dozier scored 19 points to lead six players with at least eight points for Alaska, which improved its win-loss mark to 3-0. Barako Bull, which was tied atop the leaderboard with the Aces prior to the game, suffered its first loss to see its record drop to 2-1.
Renaldo Balkman scored 17 of his game-high 34 points in a furious third quarter run as the Petron Blaze Boosters cruised to an easy victory over Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, 105-90, Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
“The team talked about consistency. We were up and down last conference. This time, we started with a loss, but we came out with a lot of intensity and played with more energy in our last two games. We need to continue to show our intense defensive effort every single game,” said Petron Blaze coach Olsen Racela.
“It’s about time they see the good happenings in this team. Madalas, nakikita ng mga tao yung mga adversities sa team naming kaya nga mayroong Petronovela.”
Baguio cools down Meralco as Alaska takes Game One of quarterfinals series
Rey Joble, InterAKTV · Thursday, December 13, 2012 · 12:15 am
New faces have joined Alaska to change the fortunes of the Aces, but it was an old reliable who carried the cudgels come playoff time.
Cyrus Baguio scored 26 points to lead Alaska to a 90-84 triumph over the Meralco Bolts to start their best-of-three Philippine Cup quarterfinals series Wednesday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
"There are six, seven new guys who have come in to this team, but Cyrus has been steady for us," said Alaska coach Luigi Trillo. "He made good plays out there tonight."
Baguio hit four three-pointers, including one at the four-minute mark of the third quarter that kicked off a 7-0 run that gave the Aces their biggest lead of the game, 69-47.
Alaska was still up by 16 points, 74-58, heading into the fourth quarter. The Aces kept the Bolts at bay for most of the period, before Sol Mercado and Jay-R Reyes teamed up to cut the lead to just six points late in the game.
But Meralco could not come any closer, allowing the Aces to come away with the victory.
"Let's give credit to Meralco. Their energy was there. There are guys who are thoroughbreds out there, including Chris Ross and Mercado," said Trillo.
Veteran Tony dela Cruz also gave Alaska a boost, posting 13 points and seven rebounds to make up for a subpar game from star rookie Calvin Abueva, who scored just six points before fouling out of the game in the fourth quarter.
Mercado, playing with an ankle injury, led the Bolts with 22 points.
Alaska can close out the series with a win in Game Two set on Friday, also at the Big Dome.
ALASKA 90 -- Baguio 26, Espinas 19, Dela Cruz 13, Thoss 10, Baracael 9, Abueva 6, Casio 5, Jazul 1, Hontiveros 1, Eman 0, Belasco 0.
MERALCO 84 -- Mercado 22,Cardona 14, Reyes 13, Ross 9, Hodge 8, Buenafe 7, Hugnatan 5, Nabong 2, Bulawan 2, Sharma 2, Borboran 0, Salvacion 0.
Quarters: 18-20, 44-33, 74-58, 90-84
Furious rally pushes Alaska to big comeback win over Petron Blaze
Rey Joble, InterAKTV · Wednesday, December
Alaska has built a reputation in the Calvin Abueva era as a defensive, hustling team.
Make the Aces the new comeback kids this time as well.
The Aces held the Petron Blaze Boosters to an all-time franchise low six points in the fourth quarter to complete a hard-earned come-from-behind victory on Wednesday night in the PBA Philippine Cup at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Down by 21 points in the closing minute of the third period, the Aces willed themselves to victory behind the efforts of JVee Casio, Abueva and Cyrus Baguio.
Casio and Abueva have recently returned from sick bay.
But neither injuries nor the Boosters could keep these Aces from spurring their team to a huge comeback win.
"There were injuries all around, but these guys just willed themselves to victory. I was kind of quiet during the huddle and going through the motions, but guys just don't want to quit," said Alaska coach Luigi Trillo.
The Boosters were held down to only a single field goal for nearly nine minutes and saw their lead chopped down by repeated Alaska uprisings.
Arwind Santos broke the silence for the Boosters with a jumper, giving his squad a 69-63 lead.
JVee Casio scored on a triple to push the Aces within three, 69-66, but Chris Lutz had a jumper from the right corner.
That was the end of the line for the Boosters, though, who failed to score in the next 2:43 of the match and watched as the Aces scored the next 13 points.
Overall, the Boosters shot a measly 3-of-18 from the field (16.7%).
ALASKA 79 -- Baguio 20, Abueva 12, Casio 12, Hontiveros 10, Thoss 8, Espinas 7, Reyes 3, Baracael 3, Eman 2, Dela Cruz 2, Jazul 0, Laure 0, Belasco 0.
PETRON 71 -- Lassiter 14, Santos 13, Cabagnot 11, Fajardo 10, Yeo 9, Miranda 8, Lutz 4, Ildefonso 2, Washington 0, Pena 0.
Quarters: 19-25, 29-41, 46-65, 79-71.