Ross explodes as San Miguel powers past TNT to tie series
Paul Lintag on Feb 14, 2017 09:30 PM
Chris Ross dropped a career-high 31 points to help the Beermen tie the series at two game apiece, setting up a pivotal Game 5 on Thursday at the Big Dome.
Valentine's Day is the time for Ross.
The reigning Defensive Player of the Year went bananas on offense and powered two-time defending champion San Miguel Beer to a convincing 97-86 victory over TNT KaTropa Tuesday in Game 4 of their best-of-7 Philippine Cup semifinals at the MOA Arena.
Chris Ross, who is also the reigning Philippine Cup Finals MVP, dropped a career-high 31 points to help the Beermen tie the series at two game apiece, setting up a pivotal Game 5 on Thursday at the Big Dome.
"I'm so happy na na-tie namin yung series or else we're in deep trouble," head coach Leo Austria said.
"I have to commend my players dahil alam nila yung sitwasyon namin, nagkaroon sila ng sense of urgency especially Chris Ross, talagang to the point na gusto niyang solohin na lahat eh. Gusto niya ipanalo lahat," he added.
After a back-and-forth first quarter, the champs broke the game open in the second period, outscoring TNT by 13 to take a 44-32 lead at the break.
By the third quarter though, it was evident that the KaTropa were not walking out with a win as Ross dropped a personal 18-point hammer on TNT, helping the Beermen build a 22-point lead, 60-38, they never lost.
Aside from a career-high 31 points, built around five treys, Ross also tallied five rebounds, five assists, and two steals for an all-around effort. June Mar Fajardo added 15 points and 15 rebounds while Marcio Lassiter also came away with a double-double, dishing out 10 assists on top of 12 markers.
For TNT, Larry Fonacier led the team with 15 points off the bench and Jayson Castro added 13 points, five rebounds, and six assists. However, Game 3 heroes Ranidel De Ocampo and RR Pogoy were limited to a combined 13 points after scoring 24 and 22 respectively in their last outing.
SMB 97 - Ross 31, Fajardo 15, Lassiter 12, Cabagnot 12, Espinas 10, Garcia 8, Santos 7, Tubid 2, Y. De Ocampo 0, Reyes 0, Heruela 0.
TNT 86 - Fonacier 15, Castro 13, Tautuaa 12, Williams 10, Pogoy 9, Rosario 5, Ganuelas-Rosser 4, R. De Ocampo 4, Rosales 4, Carey 4, Reyes 4, Seigle 2, Sumalinog 0.
Quarterscores: 18-19, 44-32, 76-58, 97-86.
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