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Batang pier in big start

GLOBALPORT stamped its class on a Mahindra team lacking in fire and chemistry, posting a 97-75 victory for a big start in the PBA Philippine Cup Friday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Batang Pier ran rings around the Floodbusters’ anemic defense and wove an awesome offensive right from the start to join early winners San Miguel Beer, Blackwater and Rain or Shine on top of the young tournament.

The Batang Pier, who won just four of their 11 outings in the last conference (the season-ending Governors’ Cup), opened up with 41-18 lead in the opening quarter on rookie Von Pessumal’s triple.

It was practically a Globalport show from there as Mahindra, which lost its usual scorer in Aldrech Ramos in the off-season trade, groped for form all nightlong.

By the end of the third, the Batang Pier were already safely ahead, 70-45, and spent the rest of the game literally like doing workout.
    
The only bright note for the Floodbusters came when they sustained their onslaught late in the opening quarter up to the onset of the second quarter. They managed to move within 26-16 on Apinan’s basket, but the Batang Pier quickly reacted by restoring order in their offensive.
    
Before the Floodbusters knew it, the Batang Pier, behind Romeo, Quinahan, Canaleta and rookie Von Pessumal, were already leading considerably at 41-18 with 4:12 minutes before halftime. Globalport hit the turn with a 20-point cushion, 46-26.
   
The Floodbusters seemed to have big chemistry problem as evidenced by the way they ran their offense which was distressingly disappointing.
    
The Floodbusters’ offense was simply in tatters as they missed shot after shot, and their defense making things worse. They converted just 11 of their 40 attempts on the floor, including 1-of-9 from the three-point area.
    
The Batang Pier, who turned in an impressive 50% marksmanship (18-of-36),  took advantage of the Floodbusters’ situation and their starting five composed of Terrence Romeo, Stanley Pringle, Mick Pennisi, KG Canaleta and JR Quinahan enabled them to rip the game apart, 13-0, before Mahindra finally broke its silence through its new acquisition in Alex Mallari who came up with a five-point cluster.
    
But the Foodbusters soon fell silent anew and Romeo, Quinahan, and Pringle continued to pounce to make it 24-5, before Jeckster Apinan and rookie Joseph Eriobu cut the Globalport surge with a basket each at the end of the opening quarter.
    
Romeo went on to finish with 19 points, while Quinahan whom Globalport acquired from Rain or Shine, and Stanley Pringle added 10 points each.
    
Globalport’s new coach Franz Pumaren though remained low key despite the win, saying Mahindra was just on adjustment stage.
    
“Mahindra is just like us. They’re just adjusting to each other. We’re still groping for form,” said Pumaren.
    
The scores:
    
GLOBALPORT 97 - Romeo 29, Pringle 16, Quinahan 10, Canaleta 9, Pessumal 8, Aban 5, Pennisi 5, Semerad 5, Maierhofer 4, Mamaril 4, Saitanan 2, Cortez 0, Dehesa 0, Paredes 0.
    
MAHINDRA 75 - Mallari 17, Deutchman 14, Apinan 10, Celda 10, Escoto 6, Revilla 5, Yee 5, Digregorio 4, Arana 2, Eriobu 2, Salva 0, Paniamogan 0, Nimes 0, Galanza 0, Ballesteros 0.
 
Quarterscores: 24-19, 46-28, 70-45, 97-75