Hotshots absorb first loss in 2021 Governors’ Cup

Magnolia failed to keep its winning streak going after falling to undermanned NorthPort, 103-101, Thursday night in the elimination round of the 2021 PBA Governors’ Cup at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

Batang Pier import Jamel Artis took over due to the absence of key players Robert Bolick, Kevin Ferrer and Greg Slaughter and dropped 42 points on an efficient 14-of-21 shooting from the field, including 3-of-5 from long distance, in a no-relief job to power the Mikee Romero-owned franchise to back-to-back wins after losing the first five.

The Hotshots fell to 6-1 with 4 games remaining on their schedule.

“This win is the work of the players. They did their work today, talagang puso, hard work, trabaho,” said NorthPort coach Pido Jarencio during the post-game presser. “I challenge the players, it’s your time to shine. Kalaban pa Magnolia, the top team. Make or break tayo, pag natalo, baka malabo na makapasok ng playoffs.”

“They responded. Even if wala si Robert, wala si Kevin (Ferrer), and si Arwind hindi 100 percent, lahat ng players nagpakamatay sa loob,” he added.

Rookie Jamie Malonzo added 19 points for NorthPort while Arwind Santos and Roi Sumang chipped in 14 and 10 markers, respectively.

Mike Harris paced Magnolia with a double-double of 34 points and 12 boards while Mark Barroca led the local charge with 16 markers. Paul Lee, Aris Dionisio and Jio Jalalon contributed 14, 11 and 10 points, respectively. Adrian Wong, who shone brightly during the game against Phoenix, was held scoreless in 24 minutes of play.

The Hotshots will try to bounce back on Sunday, February 27 when take on the powerhouse San Miguel Beermen at 6:30pm in the same venue.

The scores:

NorthPort 103 – Artis 42, Malonzo 19, Santos 14, Sumang 10, Taha 9, Balanza 5, Doliguez 2, Abundo 1, Rike 1.

Magnolia 101 – Harris 34, Barroca 16, Lee 14, Dionisio 11, Jalalon 10, Sangalang 9, Corpuz 4, Ahanmisi 3, Reavis 0, Wong 0, Brill 0.

Quarterscores: np 33-21, 58-46, 77-62, 103-101.

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