#PBA2015 Philippine Cup Finals Roundup: January 11, 2015

The San Miguel Beermen went through a dramatic meltdown in the fourth quarter, while the Alaska Aces were all too happy to pounce and grab a 2-1 series lead in the 2014-2015 PBA Philippine Cup Finals.

Calvin Abueva keyed another come-from-behind win for the Aces.

Game recap (adapted from InterAKTV):

Box scores.
The Alaska Aces found themselves in a big second half deficit, but they bounced back with a dominating fourth quarter to score another big comeback win, 78-70, against San Miguel in Game Three of the PBA Philippine Cup finals on Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

Alaska outscored San Miguel, 32-6, in the fourth quarter to come away with a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven final series.

Calvin Abueva led the Aces with 16 points, 15 rebounds, and 5 assists, but he also got a huge boost from Sonny Thoss and JV Casio, who both gave valuable points in crunch time.

Casio finished with 11 points and 5 assists, while Thoss had 10 points alongside 4 rebounds and 2 blocks. The pair combined to score 8 of the last 10 Alaska points, including four in the final minute of the game.

The opening period was an Alaska kind of quarter as the Aces’ defense held San Miguel down to a mere eight points.

It was déjà vu for Arwind Santos in Game Three as he collided with Abueva again, this time on a fastbreak layup, and was once again opened up after getting caught by the Alaska forward’s follow-through.

In the third quarter, Santos came out aggressive, scoring the first five San Miguel points.

His three-pointer at the 5:24 mark sparked the Beermen’s biggest run of the game as they went on a dominating 16-0 blast, which gave them a 21-point advantage, 61-40, with 2:11 left in the third.

But Alaska, true to form, staged an epic comeback in the fourth quarter.

They rampaged their way to a 20-1 run, including back-to-back three-pointers from Dondon Hontiveros. Ping Exciminiano capped the run with a fastbreak layup and another opportunity in transition that resulted in two free throws.

Exciminiano’s first charity tied the game at 65-all while the second put the Aces in the lead, 66-65, for the first time since the second quarter.

Casio and Thoss then combined to score 8 of the Aces’ last 10 points in the game.

San Miguel’s six points was the second lowest output in any quarter in the Beermen’s franchise history, according to PBA head of statistics Fidel Mangonon III.

Line of the Game: Calvin Abueva - 16pts, 15rebs, lasts, 1blk, 7/13 FGs.

Not even Arwind Santos's double-double could save the Beermen.
JV Casio was effective once again for Alaska.
Best Players of the Game Ping Exciminiano (L) and Sonny Thoss (R) flank the eye-catching Erika Padilla.
Images by Pranz Kaeno Billones/Sports5.

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