MANILA, Philippines—Marcio Lassiter’s late-game heroics lifted San Miguel to the 101-100 win over Alaska in the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup Wednesday at DHVSU Gym in Bacolor, Pampanga.
Lassiter drilled the game-winning three-pointer from the left corner off of CJ Perez’ pass with 3.8 seconds to play that also secured the fourth seed for the Beermen with a 7-4 record heading into the quarterfinals.
The Beermen and Aces traded counters in the fourth. Alaska looked like it landed the haymaker when Abu Tratter knocked down a jumper for the 100-98 lead with 19.7 seconds left.
San Miguel, however, found the open shot after several passes after the initial play for June Mar Fajardo discombobulated and forced the Beermen to concoct an offensive sequence on the fly that led to Lassiter’s three.
“Since winning our first title, our philosophy has always been give it to June Mar in the post,” said Beermen head coach Leo Austria, who’s won eight championships with the team. “Good thing is we got a bit lucky.”
“When they prevented June Mar, he made the kick out pass and we found the open shot just in time.”
Perez led San Miguel with a team-high 20 points with six rebounds and four steals while Fajardo had 17 points, 10 boards, and six assists.
— PBA (@pbaconnect) September 22, 2021
Lassiter had 13 points and his three-pointer in the fourth was his only field goal in the quarter.
Tratter had a game-high 24 points to lead the Aces who dropped to 3-7 and whose quarterfinal hopes are now in danger.
The Aces will now need to win their final game of the preliminaries against NorthPort to get to a 4-7 slate, and hope that Barangay Ginebra loses its match against Meralco, if they ever dream of making the playoffs.
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