"Big Game James" too hot to handle as San Mig Massacred Ginebra, marches to the finals

At the start of game 7, fans expected a neck-to-neck, down to the wire game,but San Mig Coffee's old reliables think differently especially "Big Game" James Yap. 

San Mig Super Coffee Mixers superstar shooting guard Yap woke up from his old form and gathered 24 of his 30 points in the first half to gave his team enough advantage and cruised to a 110-87 unbelievable massacre over crowd-favorite Barangay Ginebra San Miguel in Game Seven of their Manila Clasico semifinals series on Wednesday at SMART-Araneta Coliseum before a new PBA record crowd of 24,883.

“Sarap lang maglaro kasi sobrang dami ng tao,” said Yap, who shot 7-of-10 from beyond the arc apart from grabbing six rebounds.

The win gave the Mixers the final ticket to the PLDT Home DSL Philippine Cup championship round.

Game 1 of the Finals will be on Friday, with San Mig set to face the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters of the best-of-7 affair.

With its run-and-gun game working,San Mig Coffee rolled to a 26-15 lead in the first quarter behind the hot hands of Yap and center Rafi Reavis, who is an unexpected contributor on offense.

San Mig Coffee still led, 31-20, on a three-pointer by Yap early in the second quarter. But Ginebra’s old reliable Mark Caguioa, inspired by the never-say-die spirit, caught fire to carry his team back. Caguioa sparked a 14-3 run that allowed Ginebra to tie the game at 34-all.

But Yap answered back to continue the onslaught for the Mixers, scoring 11 points in a 23-10 run that gave his team a 57-44 spread at halftime.

San Mig Coffee continued to nurse the lead in the second half, taking a 79-67 advantage heading into the final period. And everything Ginebra rallied, San Mig had answers.

The "Scoring Apostle" Peter June Simon took over in the fourth quarter, where he scored 15 of his 28 points to keep Ginebra at bay.

He nailed two free throws with 2:53 remaining to push the lead to 18, 102-84.

Mark Barroca put the nail on the coffin a few moments later with a three-pointer, before Simon hit another jumper for a 107-84 insurmountable lead.

Outside Yap and Simon, the Mixers actually collected big numbers from Rafi Reavis, rookie forward Ian Sangalang, who banged in 15 points apiece while Marc Pingris chipped in a near triple-double performance of eight points, 10 rebounds and seven assists.
Third-year guard Mark Barroca added six points and 10 assists, while hounding Ginebra playmaker LA Tenorio who scored 16 points but shot just 2-of-12 from beyond the arc and had only two assists in 36 minutes.
Mark Caguioa carried the scoring brunt for the Gin Kings with 23, though the Mixers’ excellent defense held him down to just six in the entire second half.
Japeth Aguilar added 17 and nine boards, while his front court partner Greg Slaughter had a quiet 12 points and a series-low three rebounds.
Overall, San Mig’s 60 percent shooting from the field was just too much for Ginebra to overcome.
The Mixers also dominated the boards, 48-35.
The scores:
San Mig 110 - Yap 30, Simon 28, Sangalang 15, Reavis 15, Pingris 8, Barroca 6, Mallari 6, Devance 2, Melton 0.
Ginebra 87 - Caguioa 23, Aguilar 17, Tenorio 16, Slaughter 12, Mamaril 6, Helterbrand 5, Ellis 4, Baracael 3, Reyes 1, Monfort 0, Urbiztondo 0.

"Big Game James" too hot to handle as San Mig Massacred Ginebra, marches to the finals "Big Game James" too hot to handle as San Mig Massacred Ginebra, marches to the finals Reviewed by Jay-R Bayon-on on 2/12/2014 Rating: 5

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