San Miguel Beer banked on the explosive performance of import Arizona Reid and Alex Cabagnot to outlast Rain or Shine 114-108 in Game Three of the best-of-five semifinals of the 40th Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup on Monday at the Araneta Coliseum.
The Beermen are now enjoying a 2-1 lead in the series.
Reid finished with 37 points including seven triples while the playmaker Cabagnot had 13 of his 26 points in the first quarter in addition to nine assists, five rebounds and three steals.
Guard Marcio Lassiter and June Mar Fajardo scored 17 points each while Ronald Tubid had eight points also for the Beermen.
“The reason why we won tonight was because we were able to adjust in this game,” said SMB head coach Leo Austria. “AZ Reid doesn’t want to lose as you see it in his eyes. Game Two was really frustrating that’s why we bounced back tonight.”
Down by six (20-26) late in the first quarter, the Elasto Paintmasters pulled of a 7-0 run capped by Lee’s trey and four free throws of McKines. The team was leading 27-26 at the start of the second period.
San Miguel Beer’s import Reid took charge in second quarter posting 14 points augmented by Fajardo’s nine points to establish a 56-54 lead for their team at halftime.
Reid led the Beermen with 18 points in the first half while Cabagnot had 16 points.
On the side of the Elasto Paint¬masters, McKines already scored 12 points each for first and second frame to with a biggest score of 24 points by half time. Lee, on the other hand, posted 15 points on a perfect 3-of-3 shooting beyond the arc.
SMB’s Arwind Santos and Rain or Shine’s Raymond Almazan were in trouble with four fouls each at halftime.
San Miguel Beer opened the second half on a bright note notching four baskets beyond the three-point zone en route to a 14-6 run that earned them a 70-60 lead with still seven minutes to go in the third canto.
Rain or Shine trimmed the deficit down to 75-78, with McKines completing a three-point play with still 4:36 remaining before the fourth quarter. San Miguel Beer, however, responded with a 10-4 run to regain the lead 89-79.
Game Two hero Jeff Chan scored a three-pointer to reduce SMB’s lead to 89-82 at the end of the third period.
Despite San Miguel Beer’s aggressiveness in the final canto, Rain or Shine managed to bring the score to 101-103 via McKines’ two free throws with still five minutes to go.
But the Elasto Paintmasters’ defense failed in the last four minutes resulting in San Miguel Beer pulling off 9-2 run earning the Beermen 112-103 advantage with only a minute remaining in the game.
The Beermen were never threatened from that point onward.
Import Wendell McKines finished with 39 points and 12 rebounds to lead Rain or Shine.