2013 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals Roundup: October 20, 2013

San Mig Coffee unloaded a big second half to pull the rug from under Petron Blaze and take a 3-2 series lead in the Finals of the 2013 PBA Governors’ Cup.

Elijah Millsap and the Boosters got hijacked by
the Mixers in Game 5.
(image by Nuki Sabio/PBA)

Coach Tim Cone's unexpected M and M connection -- Marqus Blakely and Mark Barroca -- was fully effective here, combining for 52 points to lead the Mixers in their 114-103 win. Blakely played without rest here, adding 15 rebounds and 7 assists to his total, while Barroca, who also stepped up big time in SMC's Game 4 victory, handed out 10 assists for his own double-double performance.

This game had most of the trademarks of a Petron win -- great outside shooting coupled with awesome production from both Elijah Millsap and June Mar Fajardo. The problem? Most of the other locals just faded in the second half, with Millsap and Fajardo combining for all but 11 second half points for the Boosters. The local who faded most noticeably? Why, no one but the MVP himself -- Arwind Santos, whose most memorable contribution in the second half was tripping up Joe Devance. Now that's what I call a Most Valuable Patid. Santos produced a dismal total of 4 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, and 1 steal in 18 minutes. Raise the roof, MVP.

The physicality and the Arwind-Devance incident aside, this series has taken on an unfortunate "colored" slant after a lot of fans were heard hurling racial slurs at SMC import Marqus Blakely. The monkey calls, in particular, were quite prevalent, and these displays of discrimination/stereotyping/stupidity surely have no place in our game. Racism in all its forms (and this is one of them -- that's no argument) should be nothing more than the stuff of history books. It's supremely sad to witness it coming to the fore in this day and age. We should all know better, right?

Game Recaps:
The San Mig Coffee Mixers took one step closer to completing their unfinished business with a rousing 114-103 victory over the Petron Blaze Boosters on Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

The victory gave San Mig Coffee a 3-2 lead in the PLDT Telpad Governors’ Cup finals.

Marqus Blakely played all 48 minutes to finish with 30 points, 15 rebounds, and seven assists, while Mark Barroca came up big anew with 22 points and 10 assists to lead the Mixers’ balanced attack.

“It’s nice to be able to win back-to-back,” said San Mig Coffee coach Tim Cone, whose team took the upper hand for the first time in the series. “As the sereies gets longer, it gets harder.”

Peter June Simon added 17 points for the Mixers while James Yap had 14, including five straight points at a crucial juncture in the fourth quarter to put out the Petron rally.

Yancy De Ocampo joined the list of heroes for San Mig Coffee, scoring six of his 10 points in a crucial fourth quarter run, while Marc Pingris added nine points and 10 rebounds.

“The players are just playing their hearts out tonight,” said Cone. “It was a really good team effort.”

The scoring barrage from San Mig Coffee seemed to overwhelm Petron in the second half. Elijah Millsap and June Mar Fajardo combined for 49 points in the last two quarters, but the rest of the Boosters managed just 11 points over that span.

“They started missing a little bit in the second half,” said Cone.

Petron coach Gee Abanilla remained positive despite the defeat.

“San Mig just played really good basketball tonight,” he said. “Right now, we’re down but we’re not out.”

Millsap finished with 37 points and 14 rebounds while Fajardo continued to dominate in the paint with 23 and 16 for Petron. But season Most Valuable Player Arwind Santos continued to be missing in action for the Boosters, finishing with just two points after missing all his field goal attempts.

The Mixers have a chance to close the series out in Game Six on Wednesday, also set at the Big Dome.

“Just play,” said Cone. “That’s what we gotta do in Game Six.”

SMC 114 – Blakely 30, Barroca 22, Simon 17, Yap 14, De Ocampo 10, Pingris 9, Mallari 5, Devance 5, Acuna 2.
PET 103 – Millsap 37, Fajardo 23, Tubid 12, Lutz 10, Lassiter 9, Lanete 5, Cabagnot 5, Santos 2, Kramer 0, Hubalde 0.
QS: 21-18, 54-54, 87-80, 114-103

Marc Pingris and James Yap embrace as they help
San Mig Coffee upend the Boosters in Game 5.

Marqus Blakely played without relief as the Mixers
went up 3-2 in the Finals.

Michela Cazzola is the new "it" face. I mean,
she is James Yap's new girlfriend after all.

Ronald Tubid and the Boosters fell hard
in the second half of Game 5.

Source: Unless otherwise specified, game recaps were compressed and compiled from InterAKTV. (Writing credit to Rey Joble)

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