The San Mig Super Coffee Mixers took a giant step closer to the championship of the 2014 Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup with another nail-biting 93-90 victory over the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters Friday, February 22 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
San Mig took control of the game early leading by as much as 13 points. But the Elasto Painters came charging back in the third period. Big man Marc Pingris was poked in the eye by Rain or Shine counterpart JR Quiñahan and the extent of the injury is unknown.
San Mig playmaker Mark Barroca, who struggled in the first three games, hit a jumper and then set up Ian Sangalang for a short stab to push San Mig to a fat six-point advantage, 90-84, with 1:33 left in the game.
The Elasto Painters called time and then fearless Paul Lee hit a triple followed by a charity splith by Quiñahan as the Elasto Painters came back into contention, 90-88, with still 43.2 seconds left to play.
Sangalang was fouled in the ensuing play and the rookie from San Sebastian College split his charities to hike the San Mig lead to three points, 91-88, with 22.1 seconds to go.
The Elasto Painters used up two timeouts but it was rewarded after Lee scored on a layup to cut the gap to just a point, 91-90, with12.4 seconds left to play.
Barroca was sent to the line by Gabe Norwood and the San Mig guard drilled both charities to finalize the count.
Lee had one final shot but his triple at the buzzer rimmed out, allowing San Mig to escape with the victory.
SAN MIG SUPER COFFEE MIXERS 93 – Mark Barroca 17, Ian Sangalang 17, James Yap 17, Joe Devance 12, Peter June Simon 12, Justin Melton 7, Marc Pingris 6, Alex Mallari 3, Rafi Reavis 2, Jerwin Gaco 0.
RAIN OR SHINE ELASTO PAINTERS 90 – Paul Lee 28, JR Quiñahan 11, Beau Belga 10, Gabe Norwood 10, Jervy Cruz 8, Raymond Almazan 6, Jeff Chan 6, Chris Tiu 4, Jireh Ibañes 4, Ryan Araña 3, TY Tang 0, Alex Nuyles 0, Jerick Teng 0, Larry Rodriguez 0.
Quarter scores: 26-27, 52-42, 70-76, 93-90.