By Peter Atencio
The San Miguel Beermen stood their ground in the last 90 seconds to escape with a 100-98 triumph over the Magnolia Timplados Hotshots Sunday night in the Philippine Basketball Basketball Association Governors’ Cup at the Araneta Coliseum.
Their defense held steady as the Beermen pulled off their fourth straight win and joined the Converge FiberXers and the NLEX Road Warriors in the lead.
Cameron Clark had 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Beermen, but he was held to just four points in the last period.
Clark’s putback, however, in the last 1:20 gave the Beermen a 100-91 cushion.
The Hotshots managed to come close off Andy Barroca’s triple and back-to-back hits from Calvin Abueva following two turnovers in the last 18 seconds.
As the Hotshots threatened by two, 98-100, the Beermen had a chance to move away.
But CJ Perez muffed two charities in the final 10 seconds.
Paul Lee, who led the Hotshots with 19 points, could have won the game for Magnolia.
But his three-point attempt misfired and Beermen cager Simon Enciso got back possession with his rebound play in the last second.
Marcio Lassiter finished with 18 points, while Perez added 17 for San Miguel Beer.
“The players played good defense. It’s the lack of good defense, which was why we struggled on offense in the first half,” said Beermen coach Jorge Gallent.