Beermen demolish third straight foe, and new coach Gallent excited to see how his squad would stack up in clash with Hotshots
San Miguel Beer on Friday produced a similar result to the previous two games to continue an undefeated start under new coach Jorge Gallent at the PBA Governors’ Cup.
Now is the first difficult period of Gallent’s youth tenure that began last Sunday before Magnolia.
“It will be a tough match [against Magnolia],” said Gallent after the Beermen got off to a slow start to create the humble Terrafirma 122-102 at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.
The 20-year journey of Dyip, who entered the game just a week after a nasty win over Meralco Bolts, mirrors the profits the Beermen have made by beating Phoenix Fuel Masters (114-93) and Blackwater Bossing (105- eighty six).
TNT surged to 3-1 later in the night after beating the Hotshots 93-85, where Roger Pogoy scored 20 points.
But against a Magnolia team known for its gritty encounters, Gallent sees the showdown at the Smart Araneta Coliseum as an enticing task if San Miguel can stay on the offensive having produced an average of 114.3 points and rows. Player only brings 93.7 points per night.
“This [Magnolia game] will test us on Sunday — whether our defenses and offenses really work,” Gallent added.
Before eyeing the Beermen, the Hotshots went into Friday night’s game to face another longtime contender in the TNT Tropang Giga with the goal of recovering from a weekend loss to league-leading Converge FiberXers.
Magnolia is actually the first in a big series for San Miguel, with Meralco following on February 9 and Converge, unbeaten 4-0, on February 11.
Gallent will need to hit the same record from import Cameron Clark, who had 31 points, 14 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 saves, ahead of Hotshots.
And on an afternoon when June Mar Fajardo fell behind with a record of six points, nine rebounds and six quiet assists, local Beermen like CJ Perez, Jericho Cruz and Allyn Bulanadi delivered.
Perez had 20 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists, Cruz had 9 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists before committing a second technical foul for mocking imported Terrafirma player Jordan Williams following the incident. Clark’s forward sent him out at the end of the third round.
Bulanadi once again put up impressive numbers with 14 points after 24 minutes on the field from the bench, proving the steal that Beermen got from NorthPort, thanks to player Paul Zamar.
A pivotal second quarter saw Beermen overtake Dyip, 38-23, leading to another loss while limiting what Williams did, compared to his two games against FiberXers and Bolts.
Williams finished with 30 points, but the way the Beermen defended left him with just 11/26 points from the field.
He started the tournament with 46 points, but Terrafirma lost to Converge. He had 29 points despite winning 9/23 beating Meralco.
“That will always happen. We are not invincible,” Gallent said after San Miguel had to go through a slow start before taking control of Terrafirma. “They started strong and we started flat. But the best part is that after three to four minutes, we woke up and brought our San Miguel basketball.”
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