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CJ Perez impresses as Columbian shocks San Miguel


Miles Morales

Top rookie pick CJ Perez looked good as advertised as he led the Columbian Dyip stun defending champs San Miguel Beermen, 124-118, opening their PBA Philippine Cup on a high note on Friday at Cuneta Astrodome.

Perez poured 26 points to lead Columbian, which finished last season’s Philippine Cup last with just a solitary win.

Jackson Corpuz backstopped Perez with 21 points.

Perez nailed the go-ahead fastbreak basket to break a 112-112 deadlock before Rashawn McCarthy drained a triple to give the Dyip a 117-113 lead with just 1:07 left to play.

Perez then grabbed a Marcio Lassiter miss and scored a free throw as Columbian’s lead swelled to six points to put the finishing touches to the win.

Arwind Santos, meanwhile, paced the Beermen with 34 points while five-time Most Valuable Player June Mar Fajardo had 25 points and 13 rebounds.

Terrence Romeo had a quiet night in his San Miguel debut, finishing with just seven points.