Star shackles GlobalPort to halt slide as Hotshots offense proves potent as ever after Maliksi trade
Malcolm Hill was close to unstoppable with 32 points against GlobalPort. Photo from PBA

STAR shackled GlobalPort’s reunited two-headed monster as it cruised to a 109-83 victory to finally get back on the winning track in the PBA Governors’ Cup on Friday night at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.

The Hotshots displayed their pesky defense by holding Terrence Romeo and the returning Stanley Pringle to just 16 points on 5-of-31 shooting combined as they were on the driver’s seat most of the game on the way to snapping a three-game skid and improving to a 5-3 win-loss card.

Malcolm Hill paced the offense that still looked potent in the departure of Allein Maliksi, as the Star import registered 32 points, on top of 12 boards, five assists, five steals, and two blocks, while Ian Sangalang added 17 points and 10 boards for the Hotshots, who moved a win away from formally clinching a postseason berth.

While they put an end to their losing streak, the Hotshots dealt the Batang Pier their third straight loss and sixth overall in nine games.

“We had a sense of urgency,” Star coach Chito Victolero said. “It was a must-win game for us because we’re still hoping to make it to the Top Four.”

The Hotshots showed the desire to arrest their skid early on, allowing the Batang Pier to score the game’s first two points, but embarking on a run and never looking back as they built a lead that ballooned to 26 points.

Kyle Pascual and Bambam Gamalinda, who the Hotshots got in the trade from Blackwater that forced them to give up Maliksi, saw some action in garbage time.

Murphy Holloway was one of the few bright spots for the Batang Pier as the bull-strong import scattered 20 points, 17 boards, four blocks, three assists, and three steals in 38 minutes that went for naught.

 

The scores:

STAR 109 – Hill 32, Sangalang 17, Ramos 9, Lee 9, Barroca 8, Mendoza 7, Pingris 6, Reavis 4, Brondial 4, Jalalon 4, Simon 2, Melton 2, Pascual 1, Abundo 0, Gamalinda 0

GLOBALPORT 83 – Holloway 20, Anthony 12, Romeo 11, Guinto 11, Baracael 10, Pringle 5, Cortez 5, Cardona 5, Hubalde 2, Paredes 2, Mamaril 0, Celiz 0, Grey 0, Arana 0

Quarterscores: 19-12, 48-38, 81-65, 109-83

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos