Corey Jefferson put up another solid performance for Alaska as the Aces trounced Blackwater, 109-95, for its second straight win in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner’s Cup on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Jefferson posted 28 points and 15 rebounds, the same numbers he produced in Alaska’s 107-79 win over GlobalPort.
Rookie Carl Bryan Cruz added 15 points and Chris Exciminiano had 13 points for the Aces. Kevin Racal and Sonny Thoss contributed 12 and 10 points, respectively for Alaska.
“Corey is a great fit for us because he’s not a ball dominator,” said Alaska coach Alex Compton. “We really respect Blackwater because they beat us fair and square last conference.”
“Greg Smith is really a good import but the good thing Sonny (Thoss) was able to get some fouls on him,” added Compton.
The Aces leaned on their defense in controlling the game as they turned Elite’s 22 turnovers into 23 turnover points in the match. Alaska also had 12 steals compared to Blackwater’s five.
Smith, who posted 37 points and 30 rebounds in Blackwater’s 116-118 double overtime loss to Phoenix last Saturday, fouled out in the match with 7:28 remaining. He finished with just 14 points and 16 rebounds as the Elite dropped to 0-2.
Reil Cervantes led Blackwater with 21 markers.
The Aces grabbed a 27-23 cushion after the first period and carried a 52-43 advantage going to the break.
Alaska unleashed a 20-8 run at the start of the third period capped by Jefferson’s three-point play off
Mike Digregorio rallied for a 72-51 spread with 5:51 left in the third.
The Elite narrowed the gap to 79-86 behind the efforts of Roi Sumang with 8:39 to play in the game.
But the Aces retaliated with a 16-8 blast highlighted by Cruz’s three-pointer to put the game out of reach, 102-8, 2:28 left in the game.