SMB take it, cut TNT to take advantage of 1 to 0



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Current champion San Miguel Beer has returned from a 12-point deficit behind Terrence Romeo and June Mar Fajardo to overthrow the TNT, 80-78, winning the first blood in their quarter-final series of the Philippines Cup 2019 , at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Romeo, the former three-time PBA scoring champion, fired 15 points to help the SMB get out of a bad night of shooting.

Fajardo took over from there, making two crucial blows along with a defensive shot with 2.2 seconds to give San Miguel the marginal lead, 80-78.

TNT had one last chance to win the game, but Roger Pogoy's three-point desperation was difficult, allowing San Miguel to win a win and advance to the semi-final.

Asked what it's like to beat his former team, the 5-foot-10 Romeo said in the post-match interview that he's just treating KaTropa like any other playoff series.

"We just needed to play with focus, so I had the same motivation, we just had to win so we can move on to the next round," Romeo said after the game.

Beermen can finish KaTropa with another win on Monday in Game 2 at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

It was an unfortunate defeat for KaTropa, who set the pace for the game from the start of the opening match of the series.

Jayson Castro actually gave TNT his biggest advantage in a 22-10 jump in a jumper at the end of the first quarter.

But SMB, seeking an unprecedented All-Filipino conference crown, methodically eliminated TNT's leadership over the next three quarters.

Helping Romeo and Fajardo were Marcio Lassiter and Alex Cabagnot, who did 15 and 12 points respectively.

Arwind Santos had a quiet score of eight points, while Christian Standhardinger scored 10 chips in addition to five points.

Troy Rosario and Pogoy led the TNT with 23 and 16 points.

The scores

San Miguel 80 – Lassiter 15, Fajardo 15, Romeo 15, Cabagnot 12, Santos 8, Ross 6, Standahrdinger 5, Rosser 2, Pessumal 2, Nabong 0.

TNT 78 – Rosary 23, Pogoy 16, Trollano 11, Williams 9, Taha 8, Castro 8, Reyes 2, A. Semerad 1, Carey 0, Heruela 0, D. Semerad 0, Washington 0.

Rooms: 13-22, 39-46, 60-65, 80-78.

EXTRA DRIBBLES

– Both teams fired badly from the field. San Miguel managed to win the game despite having made just 32 of 81 from the ground by only 39 percent. On the other hand, TNT did much worse with its 30% (24-of-80) clip.

– The Beermen lost in the battle of the boards, 51-59. But they made their living on the shaded lane with their considerable advantage of 42 to 28 points in the painting.

– "Blur" Jayson Castro was a non-offensive factor, scoring just eight points in 2 of 9 pitches. But he managed to contribute in other facets with his six rebounds and seven assists.

NEXT GAME

April 8 – Game 2 7:00 PM at the Coliseum Smart Araneta

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