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Fajardo, San Miguel stave off Batang Pier

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Miles Morales

Five-time MVP June Mar Fajardo erupted for 40 points to lead San Miguel in its 113-107 escape from NorthPort for their fourth straight win in the 2019 PBA Philippine Cup, Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Fajardo dropped 14 in the final quarter, where the defending champions pended off the Batang Pier as the latter came back and closed within two with 2:29 to go.

On top of his 40-point output, Fajardo also collected 19 rebounds, and 4 assists in over 40 minutes.

Terrence Romeo had 23 points while Marcio Lassiter supplied 14 points. Arwind Santos and Kelly Nabong had 11 markers apiece.

The Beermen had a sluggish start after missing their first eight shots. The Batang Pier took advantage and erected an 18-4 lead in the first canto.

However, San Miguel was a different animal in the second half as they stole the lead from NorthPort and posted an 83-68 cushion with 3:49 left in the third quarter.

Chris Ross knocked down a booming triple from the top of the key to widen the defending four-time All-Filipino champions’ lead to 6 — and to settle the final score — with 12.1 ticks left to play.

Mo Tautuaa led NorthPort with 28 points and 13 rebounds. Sean Anthony flirted with a triple-double with 16 points, 8 boards, and six assists.