PBA: Phoenix keeps no. 1 after thrilling win over Magnolia

Paul Lintag on Mar 06, 2019 09:39 PM
PBA: Phoenix keeps no. 1 after thrilling win over Magnolia
Calvin Abueva and the Fuel Masters retain no. 1 in the All-Filipino with an 8-1 record after the Magnolia win.

Phoenix has figured out how to win close games.

The no. 1 ranked Fuel Masters pulled out another masterful victory Wednesday in the 2019 PBA Philippine Cup, escaping Magnolia in a thriller at the Big Dome, 89-87.

Down two after Paul Lee completed a three-point play, reigning Rookie of the Year Jason Perkins drilled a booming corner triple with 19 seconds to go to push Phoenix ahead, 88-87.

The Fuel Masters then stopped the Hotshots on the other end and Magnolia ended up fouling Perkins with six seconds to go.

Perkins split, making his last free throw, and then Phoenix stopped Magnolia again, holding on for the no. 1 spot with a near-perfect 8-1 record.

"Yeah grind-out [win]," head coach Louie Alas said.

"Sinabi ko na to dati, ito yung gustong-gusto naming panalo, yung may character," he added.

Phoenix was down 17 in the first half but managed to make it a game by the break. The Fuel Masters kept things close until the fourth quarter, where they won in the final minute thanks to their clutch work on both ends.

Calvin Abueva dominated for 24 points, 13 rebounds, and five assists to lead Phoenix in the win. Matthew Wright and Jason Perkins added 14 and 12 points respectively.

Paul Lee and Mark Barroca scored 16 points each for Magnolia but the Hotshots remain in last place with a 1-4 record in the All-Filipino.


The scores:

Phoenix Pulse 89 – Abueva 24, Jazul 19, Wright 14, Perkins 12, Mallari 8, Chua 6, Kramer 4, Dennison 2, Revilla 0, Mendoza 0, Marcelo 0.

Magnolia 87 – Lee 16, Barroca 16, Jalalon 11, Sangalang 10, Dela Rosa 10, Reavis 7, Brondial 6, Gamalinda 4, Ramos 3, Melton 2, Herndon 2.

Quarters: 13-17; 39-44; 63-69; 89-87.


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