San Miguel dethrones Ryukyu Golden Kings, advances to the semifinal round

San Miguel leaned on the big games of Dezmine Wells and Terrence Romeo to put away deposed champion Ryukyu Golden Lions, 101-92, for a place in the semifinals of the East Asia League Terrific 12 Thursday night at the jampacked Tap Seac Multisport Pavilion.

Wells torched the Kings for 42 big points, while Romeo finished with 18 in the win that allowed the Beermen to top Group B with a perfect 2-0 mark and advance to the next round as the lone surviving PBA ballclub.

The Beermen arranged a do-or-die encounter with Group D qualifier Liaoning Flying Leopards led by former NBA player Lance Stephenson on Saturday for the right to play in the one-game final.

Coach Leo Austria is tempering expectations despite San Miguel winning games in the absence of starters June Mar Fajardo, Marcio Lassiter, and Alex Cabagnot due to injuries.

“We still don’t know the strengths and weaknesses of the other team (Liaoning). They’re in the semis and that means they’re really good,” he said.

The duo of Wells and Romeo was more than good enough against the Golden Lions, who led the game early on only to falter once the explosive San Miguel pair took over midway in the opening period.

The scores:

San Miguel 101 – Wells 42, Romeo 18, Prosper 15, Zamar 9, Standhardinger 7, Pessumal 5, Santos 3, Ross 2, Tubid 0.

Ryukyu Golden Kings 92 – Brooks 34, Kishimoto 12, Hasegawa 9, Kantake 9, Mitsuhara 8, Namizato 8, Ishizaki 5, Fukuda 4, Onodera 3.

Quarterscores: 31-24, 53-46, 74-68, 101-92.

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