San Juan's Wilson-Cardona 1-2 punch downs Davao in MPBL Finals Game 1
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Apr 11, 2019 09:27 PM
Game 1 of the MPBL Datu Cup National Finals goes to San Juan
John Wilson joined forces with Mac Cardona as they showed the way for San Juan in coming into the Davao City Recreation Center, Thursday and capturing Game 1 of the MPBL Datu Cup National Finals by upending home team Davao Occidental, 84-74.
Cardona, a one-time Finals MVP and one-time Best Player of the Conference in the PBA, proved he was no stranger to the biggest stage and the brightest lights of the season and poured in 16 points on top of seven rebounds, five assists, and two steals.
Seven of Cardona's output came in the Knights' 12-1 rampage late in the second that opened up a seven-point lead to a 47-29 advantage at the 1:31 mark of the quarter.
The home team Tigers mounted an uprising late in the third period as Mark Yee's triple pulled them within six, 54-60, but Wilson scored four points in 10-4 counter that re-established a 70-56 San Juan edge early in the final frame.
Wilson, another ex-pro, totaled 21 points to go along with eight rebounds, four steals, and three assists while Mike Ayonayon had 11 markers of his own as they drew first blood in the best-of-five series.
The Knights try once more to snag a victory as visitors in Game 2, Saturday still at the same venue.
The Finals Game 1 win keeps them rolling as they have now won their last three games. Before that, they were on the brink of elimination, down 0-1 in the race-to-two semifinals series opposite Manila.
On the other hand, Davao Occidental lost for the second time in its past three outings. Emman Calo paced them in this one with 27 points while MVP contender Yee chipped in 13 markers and eight rebounds.
SAN JUAN 84 - Wilson 21, Cardona 16, Ayonayon 11, Jeruta 9, Rodriguez 8, Clarito 8, Muyang 4, Tajonera 3, Wamar 2, Aquino 2, Isit 0
DAVAO OCCIDENTAL 74 - Calo 27, Yee 13, Terso 11, Najorda 5, Robles 4, Custodio 4, Ombecan 4, Medalla 3, Lamocha 2, Raymundo 1, Estrellante 0, Adorneo 0
QUARTER SCORES: 25-17, 49-32, 66-56, 84-74
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