Alaska claimed a share of the early lead while handing San Miguel Beer a second straight defeat after a 99-94 win Friday, Dec. 10 in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Import Olu Ashaolu continued to show why he was seen as a great fit from the start after producing 23 points, 13 rebounds and four assists as the Aces posted a 2-0 record for the first time under coach Jeffrey Cariaso.
Robbie Herndon, who go-ahead shot enabled Alaska to beat NorthPort two days prior, also had another solid game with 11 points, six rebounds, two assists and two steals while Mike DiGregorio and rookie Alec Stockton added 10 apiece.
The Aces joined the NLEX Road Warriors on top of the standings after two playdates and they’ll look to end the week on a high note against defending champion Barangay Ginebra San Miguel on Sunday.
Beating Ginebra will allow Alaska to match its win total from the previous conference.
Cariaso once again cited the two wins to the team’s good conditioning and the presence of Ashaolu, who had another impressive job for the Aces.
“I think we’re in a lot better shape going into this, the guys have been focused and Olu has been has been a big part of this 2-0 start,” said Cariaso.
June Mar Fajardo had 23 points and 15 rebounds while import Brandon Brown scored 22 but dealt with foul trouble as the Beermen fell to 0-2 after dealing Arwind Santos and Alex Cabagnot to NorthPort and Terrafirma for Vic Manuel and Simon Enciso.
Manuel and Enciso were held to six points each.
Ashaolu scored in the third as Alaska seized control of the contest to for a 77-68 lead even as SMB was forced to play all-Filipino when Brown committed his fifth foul during the same period.
A basket by Rodney Brondial to begin the fourth for 79-68 gave the Aces their largest lead.
ALASKA 99 — Ashaolu 23, Herndon 11, Stockton 10, Digregorio 10, Tratter 10, Ahanmisi 9, Teng 7, Tolomia 6, Taha 4, Brondial 4, Racal 3, Adamos 2.
SAN MIGUEL 94 — Fajardo 23, Brown 22, Romeo 16, Lassiter 11, Perez 7, Enciso 6, Manuel 6, Tautuaa 3, Zamar 0, Pessumal 0.
Quarters: 25-28, 53-51, 77-68, 99-94.