San Miguel Beer made a quick turnaround from its 94-98 upset by GlobalPort the last time out, banking heavily on Renaldo Balkman’s superb job to withstand TNT KaTropa, 99-94, in an intense Petron Blaze Saturday matchup in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the MOA Arena.
Balkman produced 43 points, 15 rebounds, six blocks and four assists in a hulking performance that powered the Beermen over the Texters in a fierce showdown marred by the ejections of SMB’s Arwind Santos and Marcio Lassiter and TNT’s Terrence Romeo and Tony Semerad on technical infractions.
Balkman and the Beermen kept their poise and composure, and in the process caught up with GlobalPort and Magnolia at sixth place on their identical 4-4 win-loss slates.
With Lassiter and Santos cooling down in their dugout, June Mar Fajardo, Chris Ross, Alex Cabagnot and Von Pessumal helped Balkman complete the crucial victory.
A free throw each by Pessumal and Cabagnot inside the last 30 seconds sealed the win.
San Miguel 99 – Balkman 43, Fajardo 19, Cabagnot 12, Ross 7, Lassiter 7, Santos 7, Pessumal 4, Lanete 0, Rosser 0.
TNT 94 – Smith 26, Pogoy 13, Trollano 13, Rosario 8, Williams 8, Castro 7, Semerad 6, Reyes 6, Cruz 3, Romeo 2, Garcia 2, Taha 0.
Quarters: 33-22, 55-46, 79-72, 99-94.