Surging Hotshots win 3rd straight, gain share of top spot
Streaking Magnolia scored eight unanswered points from the opening tip to cruise to a 113-95 trouncing of Columbian in the 2018 PBA Governors’ Cup Wednesday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Hotshots, who chalked up their third consecutive win, gained a share of the lead with the Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings in the standings at 5-1.
Romeo Travis recorded a double-double with 32 points and 14 rebounds with seven assists to boot while Mark Barroca was a spark off the bench with 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field and three steals.
“This is a very important game for us. I told my players whatever our mindset was against San Miguel and Rain or Shine, we need to have it against Columbian because we cant afford to relax. we need to finish strong,” said Magnolia head coach Chito Victolero.
Riding high after a pair of impressive wins over Rain or Shine last Wednesday and San Miguel Beer on Sunday, Magnolia went to work early and never letup behind Travis’ solid play on both ends and its slew of guards in Barroca, Paul Lee and Jio Jalalon.
The Hotshots, who shot a blistering 51 percent clip from the field and had 31 assists, doubled a 14-point halftime lead with Robbie Herndon’s layup off a Jalalon dish making it, 77-49, with 7:11 remaining in the third quarter.
Lee, who averaged 25 points in his last two games, didn’t need to score as much this time but still played a key role. He wound up with 13 points, five rebounds and two assists while Jalalon scattered six points, three rebounds, nine assists and two steals.
The Dyip’s misery continued as they reeled to their seventh straight setback in as many games. Jackson Corpuz had 20 points and nine rebounds while Akeem Wright added 19 points and eight rebounds for Columbian.
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