San Mig Coffee wins PBA Governors' Cup
MANILA (UPDATED) - San Mig Coffee drubbed Petron Blaze in the winner-take-all Game 7, 87-77, to clinch the PBA Governors’ Cup in front of more than 21,000 spectators at the Araneta Coliseum on Friday night.
After engaging the Boosters in three tight quarters, the Mixers unleashed a searing 9-2 run in the final three minutes to break away and secure the title.
Marc Pingris outplayed Petron’s bigman Junemar Fajardo and finished Game 7 with 19 points and 17 rebounds to go with his 5 blocks.
It was a redemption of sorts for the Gilas player, who failed to finish in their Game 6 loss to the Boosters due to a sprained ankle.
“Inisip ko talaga na laro lang talaga eh... hindi ko na iniisip yung naisprain ako nun Game 6, ang sabi ko lang samahan lang ako ni Lord, ginabayan ako't hindi sumakit ang paa ko,” said the 6’5” forward after the game.
“Sa lahat ng mga fans, kayo po ang nagbibigay ng lakas sa amin. Maraming salamat po sa pagpunta nyo rito.”
He was eventually named PBA Finals' Most Valuable Player.
Trailing San Mig by 2 points at the half, the Boosters stalked the Mixers in the third but could not get any closer than 5 points.
Things went awry for Petron when Marques Blakely started a 9-2 exchange via a transition play with 1:47 left to play in the fourth quarter.
In that telling run, only Mark Barroca managed to score for the Boosters, sinking both of his free throws with 21.3 seconds left in the game.
The win enabled San Mig coach Tim Cone to match the all-time best record of 15 titles set by PBA coaching legend Virgilio “Baby” Dalupan.
“I'm just very humbled at the moment... i think we're the underdogs coming in. Petron is such a well constructed team,” said Cone during the post-game interview.
“I'm so humbled because my idol Baby Dalupan, when I was growing up here, he was the guy, he was the man we all watched, and watched him coached Crispa and even Great Taste later on. It's so humbling to be able to tie a great man like that.”
San Mig Coffee also frustrated the campaign of Petron’s rookie coach Gee Abanilla, who steered the Boosters to a sensational 8-1 run in the eliminations only to lose in their best-of-7 title series versus the Mixers, 4-3.
Blakely tallied 19 points for San Mig Coffee, which also got 16 points from PJ Simon.
Elijah Millsap and Fajardo scored 25 points and 20, respectively, for Petron, which failed to get added scoring boost from the rest of its crew.
San Mig 87 - Blakely 19, Pingris 19, Simon 16, Devance 11, Barroca 10, Yap 8, Mallari 2, De Ocampo 2.
Petron 77 - Millsap 25, Fajardo 20, Lassiter 11, Cabagnot 8, Santos 7, Lutz 4, Kramer 2, Deutchman 0, Tubid 0.
Quarterscores: 19-19, 41-39, 65-61, 87-77