by Jonas Terrado
Games Today (Cuneta Astrodome)
4:30 p.m. – Meralco vs Phoenix
7 p.m. – Alaska vs San Miguel
Ian Sangalang bounced back from a disappearing act the last time with a pair of crucial baskets in the final three minutes to give Magnolia a 103-99 victory over Blackwater in their quarterfinal duel last night and advance to the semifinals of the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Sangalang’s baskets during that final stretch enabled the Hotshots to complete their comeback from a seven-point deficit early in the fourth quarter and book their place in the best-of-five semis of the season-ending conference.
He finished with 18 points after being held scoreless last Oct. 28 when the Hotshots lost to Barangay Ginebra San Miguel in their final elimination round assignment.
Magnolia could end up facing Ginebra in the semifinals should the Kings finish off the NLEX Road Warriors in the other quarterfinal match being held at presstime.
Top seed Ginebra holds a twice-to-beat edge over NLEX, which placed eighth after the elims.
His layup with 3:14 remaining in the fourth made it 95-94 for Magnolia, which trailed 91-84 with over six minutes to play in the period.
Allein Maliksi put Blackwater on top once more with two free throws, but Sangalang responded by scoring a three-point play off Maliksi’s foul, less than two minutes to go, for a 98-96 Magnolia advantage.
Import Romeo Travis help extend the Hotshots’ lead to 100-96 when he found a cutting Jio Jalalon underneath for a layup with 1:22 left, though the Elite made one final push when Paul Zamar knocked down a triple and Travis splitting his charities.
YENG PICKS LA, SANTOS
Meantime, national team coach Yeng Guiao picked veterans LA Tenorio and Arwind Santos and amateur stars Kai Sotto and Ricci Rivero while leaving out naturalized player Andray Blatche and Terrence Romeo from the 20-man pool formed before the fifth window of the FIBA World Cup Qualifiers.
Tenorio and Santos will join forces with Paul Lee, Stanley Pringle, Alex Cabagnot, Matthew Wright, Marcio Lassiter, Scottie Thompson, Gabe Norwood, Japeth Aguilar, Beau Belga, Christian Standhardinger, Poy Erram and Ian Sangalang for the matches against Kazakhstan on Nov. 30 and Iran on Dec. 3.
June Mar Fajardo and Greg Slaughter, who missed the fourth window due to injuries, were also included in the pool while Jayson Castro and Troy Rosario will be eligible to play for the Iran match.
MAGNOLIA 103 – Lee 22, Travis 18, Sangalang 18, Simon 16, Barroca 9, Melton 8, Brondial 4, Reavis 3, Dela Rosa 3, Jalalon 2.
BLACKWATER 99 – Walker 18, Erram 15, Zamar 13, Maliksi 12, Belo 11, Digregorio 8, Pinto 7, Sumang 7, Al-Hussaini 4, Javier 4, Jose 0.
Quarters: 32-22, 55-47, 76-78, 103-99.
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