NORTHPORT has now big reason to smile on this month of October.
Winless in their last four outings, the Batang Pier finally arrested their alarming slump this month by beating Phoenix, 80-70, behind the steady offensive in the PBA Governors’ Cup.
There was absolutely no doubt about the Batang Pier’s first win in October, having smooth ball movement as manifested by 26 assists and going unrelenting in their defense as they stunned the Fuel Masters during the Petron Blaze Saturday Special at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Mo Tautuaa was easily the most consistent among the Batang Pier after coming away with 16 points, nine rebounds and four assists in a yeoman job well complemented by Paolo Taha, Mychal Ammons, and Garvo Lanete.
Taha chipped in 14 points, Ammons added 12 points and six rebounds while Laneta 11 for NorthPort which ended its four-game slump – three of them coming this month.
The win was only the second in six outings for the Batang Pier.
Alex Mallari tallied 15 points and six rebounds for the Fuel Masters who went down in defeat anew after an 86-84 win over Rain or Shine last Oct. 9. In all, the Fuel Masters lost five of their seven games.
Phoenix outrebounded Northport the entire first half, 32-20, but the latter had more assists, 11-5, and its scoring more balance. Big baskets by Paolo Taha and Garvo Lanete enabled NorthPort to build a 17-6 lead late in the opening quarter.
CJ Bolick, Ammons and Kevin Ferrer took their turns in the second half to sustain the momentum for NorthPort which stretched its lead to 26-12, 8:03 remaining in second period.
The Fuel Masters fought back behind Eugene Phelps, RR Garcia, and RJ Jazul to move within 35-31, before Lanete made a triple for a 38-31 NorthPort lead at the half.
NorthPort (80) - Tautuaa 16, Taha 14, Ammons 12, Lanete 11, Elorde 9, Ferrer 8, Bolick 5, Cruz 4, Anthony 1, Mercado 0, Escoto 0, King 0.
Phoenix (70) - Mallari 15, Phelps 14, Perkins 10, Garcia 9, Napoles 8, Jazul 6, Chua 2, Kramer 2, Marcelo 2, Dennison 2, Wright 0, Potts 0,
Quarterscores: 17-8, 38-31, 58-55, 80-70.