Sean Anthony delivered the clutch points in the stretch and enabled NorthPort to hold off Magnolia Ang Pambansang Manok 102-99 Wednesday in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Anthony’s elbow jumper and four pressure-packed free throws inside the last 65 seconds kept the Batang Pier just out of the clutches of the Hotshots who found ways to make the game close despite new import James Farr’s struggles.
The likes of Paolo Taha, Jonathan Grey, Mo Tautuaa and even Nico Elorde led the other NorthPort players who played out their part and made up for the absence of Stanley Pringle (ankle pain) and the generally listless game of their own import, Prince Ibeh.
As a result, the Batang Pier pulled off their second straight win and fifth in six games that tied them with idle Blackwater for the lead.
Winning coach Pido Jarencio is simply glad with the team effort his charges displayed.
“Iyung mga players nag-i-step up, nag-de-deliver,” noted Jarencio following the hard-earned follow-up to his team’s more lopsided 121-88 win over San Miguel Beer last Wednesday.
NorthPort 102 – Anthony 22, Taha 16, Tautuaa 14, Grey 14, Elorde 12, Bolick 11, Ibeh 10, Lanete 3, Gabayni 0.
Magnolia 99 – Sangalang 21, Herndon 18, Lee 16, Barroca 14, Farr 11, Jalalon 7, Brondial 5, Ramos 3, Melton 2, Dela Rosa 2, Pascual 0.
Quarterscores: 16-23, 48-43, 70-62, 102-99.