Star continues mastery of Phoenix with 19-point rout
Paul Lintag on Mar 22, 2017 09:50 PM
The Hotshots dominate the Fuel Masters again, pushing their winning margin this season to 114 points over the course of four games.
Same old, same old for Star and Phoenix.
The Hotshots asserted their mastery of the Fuel Masters, using a big second half half effort to crush Phoenix, 101-82, Wednesday at the Big Dome to start their 2017 PBA Commissioner's Cup campaign.
Sure, Star's winning margin over Phoenix has gone down from 44 to 19 but the Hotshots still dominate this matchup, outscoring the Fuel Masters a combined by 114 points in four games so far this season, all of which have been impressive wins.
"I reminded my players to keep focus and stay aggressive. We know Phoenix was motivated because of what happened to them last conference," head coach Chito Victolero said.
True enough, the Hotshots flipped the switch in the second half, turning a three-point lead at the break to a 19-point win to jumpstart their run in the mid-season conference.
It was a balanced efofrt for Star as four locals finished with double figures to back up first-time import Tony Mitchell.
Mark Barroca finished with 17 points while Allein Maliksi, called up for Gilas Pilipinas duty in place of Paul Lee added 16. Ian Sangalang and PJ Simon scored 10 apiece.
Mitchell, a former Detroit Piston, wrapped up his PBA debut with 24 points and 16 rebounds.
The Fuel Masters, who fell to 1-1 for the conference, simply could not keep up in the second half.
New import Jameel McKay, who replaced the high-scoring Eugene Phelps who is bound for Puerto Rico, led Phoenix with 34 points and 20 rebounds in almost 43 minutes of play.
Unfortunately for him, the locals struggled to make shots from the field as only JC Intal (13 points) and John Wilson (10 points) cracked double digits.
STAR 101 - Mitchell 24, Barroca 17, Maliksi 16, Simon 10, Sangalang 10, Ramos 9, Melton 7, Jalalon 4, Lee 2, Reavis 0, Brondial 0.
PHOENIX 82 - McKay 34, Intal 13, J. Wilson 10, Borboran 7, Jazul 6, Baguio 4, Dehesa 4, Lanete 2, W. Wilson 2, Kramer 0, Alolino 0, Torres 0.
Quarterscores: 30-22, 46-43, 75-67, 101-82.
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