MANILA – Magnolia Hotshots turned to Ian Sangalang in the end game to cruise to a 92-87 victory over GlobalPort Batang Pier in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Saturday at the AUF Sports Arena and Cultural Center in Angeles, Pampanga.
Trailing 83-85 with over three minutes left, Sangalang anchored a 7-0 scoring run by Hotshots to build a 90-85 advantage following an inside hit by Paul Lee.
Batang Pier had its last push to come to within 87-90 on free throws by Stanley Pringle. A split free throw by Vernon Macklin and Jiovani Jalalon sealed the win for Hotshots.
Sangalang finished the match with 22 points and eight rebounds while Macklin had double-double 19 points and 14 rebounds for Hotshots (1-1).
Hotshots got to an early start and went up by as much as 8 points on baskets from Macklin and Sangalang. Batang Pier answered with a run in the second canto to take a 45-40 lead.
Magnolia gained headway in the third quarter behind Sangalang, Aldrech Ramos and Andy Mark Barroca but Batang Pier quickly responded with a rally to make it a seesaw affair in the fourth.
Sean Anthony posted 20 points for Batang Pier (3-2). Malcolm White had double-double 17 points and 14 rebounds, while Stanley Pringle and Moala Tautuaa had 14 and 12, respectively.
Bacolodnon Nico Paolo Javelona had a decent PBA debut for Batang Pier with 9 points – on 3-of-3 3-point shooting – to go along with two rebounds and two assists./PN