Phoenix got hot at just the right time.
The Fuel Masters are back on the winning track in the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup, stopping Northport Wednesday at the Big Dome, 97-87.
Matthew Wright caught fire in the fourth quarter, helping Phoenix build a 15-point lead which was more than enough to handle business against the Batang Pier.
Struggling mid-way throught the conference, the Fuel Masters get a much-needed win to improve to 3-4. Meanwhile, Northport’s four-game streak came to an end and the Batang Pier have lost grip of first place with a 7-2 mark.
“Grind out game,” said head coach Louie Alas.
“Nagiging consistent na ulit kami sa strength namin which is rebounding. 56-46 that’s 10 more posessions for us,” he added.
It was a close game through three quarters before Matthew Wright anchored the Phoenix’s offense in the fourth.
Wright scored 14 of his 28 points in the final period, allowing the Fuel Masters to pull away. Northport got the lead down to four late but Phoenix proved to be steadier down the stretch.
After Wright, import Richard Howell scored 18 points and grabbed 15 rebounds for Phoenix while RJ Jazul added 17 makers.
Northport got 19 points from Mo Tautuaa and another 18 from Kevin Ferrer but the Batang Pier missed out on solo first place.
Phoenix 97 - Wright 28, Howell 18, Jazul 17, Pwrkins 12, Mallari 11, Chua 6, Intal 3, Napoles 2, Kramer 0, Marcelo 0, Wilson 0, Dennison 0.
NorthPort 87 - Tautuaa 19, Ferrer 18, Anthony 16, Ibeh 12, Bolick 11, Taha 6, Lanete 3, Cruz 2, Mercado 0, Arana 0.
Quarters: 19-28, 39-43, 64-51, 97-87.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8