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Star off to fine start

Star Hotshots’ Cinmeon Bowers is forced to pass the ball to teammate Rafi Reavis during their PBA Governors’ Cup match with the Blackwater Elite yesterday at Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Hotshots won, 103-86. (MB photo | Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

Star Hotshots’ Cinmeon Bowers is forced to pass the ball to teammate Rafi Reavis during their PBA Governors’ Cup match with the Blackwater Elite yesterday at Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Hotshots won, 103-86. (MB photo | Rio Leonelle Deluvio)

by Jonas Terrado

The Star Hotshots took advantage of an injury to Blackwater import Trevis Simpson and secured a 103-86 victory last night in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Peter June Simon and Ian Sangalang combined for 14 points in the fourth quarter as the Hotshots pulled away after Simpson sustained a bruised left groin shortly after the start of the period to start their campaign in the third conference on a high note.

Simon finished with 20 points while Sangalang added 14 points and five rebounds for Star, which led 101-80 during garbage time after starting the fourth carrying a 75-68 advantage.

“Good thing pag maganda yung depensa namin, maganda rin yung nangyayari sa offense namin,” said Hotshots coach Chito Victolero.

Import Cinmeon Bowers had 15 points, eight rebounds and five assists in almost 30 minutes, concentrating more on making passes than getting his points. While Bowers seemed unimpressive in his debut, Victolero gave him a passing mark.

“Ok naman ang nilaro ng import namin, siguro nag-aadjust pa siya dun sa system ko, but I’m happy sa nilaro ni CB, siguro kailangan pa niyang mag-adjust dun sa physicality nung game, plus yung how to finish the basket,” Victolero said.

Simpson had 24 points, eight rebounds and three assists, but was forced to sit out the rest of the game with 11:36 remaining as he was trying to go left against Star’s Paul Lee, thus leading to his injury.

Star was holding a 75-70 lead at that time, but Sangalang scored six of the team’s next seven points before Simon made eight points in a row to put the Hotshots ahead, 90-77, 7:22 to go in the fourth.

The Hotshots produced their biggest lead on Barroca’s jumper with 2:30 remaining, leaving the Elite frustrated after suffering their second straight defeat.

STAR 103 – Simon 20, Bowers 15, Maliksi 15, Sangalang 14, Reavis 11, Lee 7, Ramos 7, Barroca 6, De la Rosa 6, Mendoza 2, Melton 0, Abundo 0, Brondial 0, Javier 0.

BLACKWATER 86 – Simpson 24, DiGregorio 11, Erram 11, Cruz 10, Banal 8, Cervantes 5, Sumang 4, Buenafe 3, Aguilar 2, Canaleta 2, Gamalinda 2, Pinto 2, Sena 2, Pascual 0.

Quarters: 28-22; 49-40; 75-68; 103-86.

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