The Magnolia blanked San Miguel Beer in the home stretch and turned to Justin Melton and Paul Lee for the key baskets as the Hotshots squeezed out a 109-108 victory to gain a piece of second place in the PBA Governors Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum Sunday.
Melton fired a trey then Lee scored on a short jumper inside the last 51 seconds as the Beermen came from behind to nail the crucial win and thus catch up with the Blackwater Elite at second spot at 4-1.
The Beermen suffered a second straight loss and dropped deeper in the lower half of chart at 2-3 despite an explosive 37-point debut by new import Kevin Murphy.
Magnolia preserved the win in the end as San Miguel couldn’t convert in the last 33 seconds with Kelly Nabong missing a three-pointer, Christian Standhardinger flubbing a follow-up then Ian Sangalang deflecting a go-for-broke runner by Alex Cabagnot.
Murphy made a good impression in his PBA debut as a sub import to Arizona Reid, narrowly missing a triple-double job with 37 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists.
Magnolia 109 – Lee 28, Travis 18, Sangalang 16, Melton 12, Dela Rosa 10, Barroca 8, Jalalon 5, Ramos 3, Simon 3, Gamalinda 2, Reavis 2, Brondial 2.
San Miguel 108 – Murphy 37, Standhardinger 27, Lassiter 14, Santos 8, Nabong 6, Ross 6, Cabagnot 4, Heruela 3, Pessumal 3, De Ocampo 0.
Quarters: 29-36, 57-61, 84-88, 109-108.