CUBAO, PHILIPPINES – Alaska utilized their inside and outside weapons to their advantage to hack out a wire-to-wire rout of Globalport, 109-84, on Sunday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum and move within a game from advancing past the semifinals of the 2016 PBA Philippine Cup.
The Aces gave the Batang Pier a taste of their own medicine, pushing up the tempo to stifle their guard-heavy foe and came out with a dominant performance to come to the brink of their second straight Philippine Cup finals appearance.
Calvin Abueva bounced back from a sorry Game 3 performance, notching 20 points with 13 rebounds to lead Alaska, while veteran gunner Dondon Hontiveros turned back the clock and fired 16 points built around five triples.
The win gives Alaska a 3-1 edge in their race-to-four entering Game 5 on Tuesday, January 12, with a 7:00 p.m. (Manila time) tipoff at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Alaska Head Coach Alex Compton reiterated that the series is far from over, despite the team’s commanding lead of the series.
“I’m blessed to coach the guys I get to coach. I think we all saw their energy out there today. I’m so proud of them. They’re committed to leaving it all out on the floor. I can’t ask for anything more,” said Compton.
“We hope we can [finish them in Game 5]. We’re not underestimating them. If you look, some of the shots they are missing are the shots they can make. I hope that our defense stays this way.”
In the first 24 minutes, Gilas Pilipinas veteran Hontiveros proved that he can still do damage with his hot hand, scoring eight of his 13 halftime points during the first quarter to give Alaska an early nine point lead, 15-6, with 6:10 left in the opening period. This opening surge resulted in a 12-point, 32-20 lead after the first 12 minutes.
Globalport could not slow down the pace, closing in on the gap within seven on Stanley Pringle’s split on the foul line with 9:19 left in the third quarter, only to see their deficit balloon to 20 by the end of the period, 82-62, and never recovered.
Backcourt partners Terrence Romeo and Pringle contributed 24 and 16 markers, respectively, for the Batang Pier, which dropped its third consecutive outing of the series after hacking out a 107-93 win in Game 1.
ALASKA 109 – Abueva 20, Hontiveros 16, Jazul 14, Banchero 10, Dela Rosa 9, Casio 8, Baguio 8, Manuel 8, Exciminiano 7, Baclao 4, Menk 3, Dela Cruz 2, Thoss 0, Eman 0
GLOBALPORT 84 – Romeo 24, Pringle 16, Washington 12, Yeo 8, Isip 6, Sumang 6, Kramer 4, Jensen 2, Maierhofer 2, Pena 2, Semerad 2, Mamaril 0, Uyloan 0
Quarters: 32-20, 54-40, 82-62, 109-84