Lassiter tows Beermen to 2-0 lead in PBA Finals
Marcio Lassiter dropped two booming triples down the stretch, turning clutch in the endgame to lead the San Miguel Beermen to a 103-95 win over the Alaska Aces last night in Game 2 of the 40th PBA Governors’ Cup Best-of-Seven Finals at the Araneta Coliseum.
Lassiter teamed up with Alex Cabagnot and import AZ Reid in overhauling a nine-point fourth quarter deficit as the Beermen duplicated their blowout 108-78 Game 1 to erect a crucial 2-0 lead in the race-to-four series.
After getting blown out in Game 1, Alaska came in more prepared, and although it trailed by double digits in the first, it appeared headed for a series-tying win when it surged to an 85-76 lead in the final 7:07.
San Miguel, however, suddenly exploded with Cabagnot and Lassiter each hitting two triples in the Beermen’s strong endgame kick.
Alaska was ahead, 93-87, when Cabagnot hit a triple to make it 93-90.
Romeo Travis, who bagged the conference’s Best Import award, sank two free throws with 2:40 left. It turned out to be Alaska’s last points as Lassiter sank a three-pointer before Reid scored in the paint that tied the contest at 95-all with 1:27 to go.
Alaska couldn’t retake the lead when Cebuano hotshot Dondon Hontiveros, normally a reliable shooter, bungled two free throws, the last attempt hitting nothing but air.
San Miguel made Alaska pay when Lassiter hit another triple from the left corner as the Beermen took the lead for good, 98-95 with one minute left.
Eight unanswered points to end the game sealed the crucual win for the Beermen, who shot 17-for-40 from the three-point land.
Alaska could only convert five of their 20 attempts from the three-point area.
Reid finished with 37 points for San Miguel, while Lassiter scored 17 on a five-for-10 shooting from beyond the arc.
Named Best Player of the Conference, Cebuano behemoth June Mar Fajardo added 16 points, while Cabagnot was the fourth Beerman scoring in double figures with 13.
Travis paced the Aces with 23 points. Sonny Thoss added 14 markers and Calvin Abueva had 13.
JVee Casio scored 11, while Chris Banchero and Cyrus Baguio each tallied 10 in a balanced attack that still failed to save the Aces.
The Beermen will try to inch close to winning their 21st championship crown when the two squads meet again in Game 3 scheduled on Wednesday.
SAN MIGUEL (103) – Reid 37, Lassiter 17, Fajardo 16, Cabagnot 13, Ross 6, Lutz 5, Santos 4, Tubid 3, Semerad 2, Espinas 0.
ALASKA (95) – Travis 23, Thoss 14, Abueva 13, Casio 11, Banchero 10, Baguio 10, Dela Rosa 6, Jazul 6, Manuel 2, Exciminiano 0, Hontiveros 0, Eman 0, Dela Cruz 0.
QUARTERSCORES: 28-24, 47-44, 73-73, 103-95.
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