MARK Barroca took a long time to get to the Big Dome on Tuesday night, but didn't take as long to wax hot.
Forced to take the MRT due to the flash floods and heavy traffic that hit the areas around the Smart Araneta Coliseum, Barroca came off the bench to help get San Mig Coffee untracked on the way to a runaway 95-82 win over Alaska in the PBA Governors Cup.
The former Smart Gilas mainstay fired 11 of his 15 points in the first half to help the Mixers turn a nine-point deficit into a 46-39 lead at the half and set the tone for the team's third successive win, fashioned out without banned starter Marc Pingris.
The rest of the Mixers then took the cue from there, with import Marqus Blakely providing the energy and the inside presence after arriving to the game in a motorcycle.
The Aces were completely out of sync in the game, shooting just 39.5 percent from the field. They also had to spend the last eight minutes of the game without head coach Luigi Trillo, who was ejected for incurring two technical fouls for excessive complaining.
“If you would ask me three or four days ago if I would sit here with two wins in our pocket, that would be crazy having to miss Joe (Devance) and then Ping (Pingris) a second time,” said San Mig coach Tim Cone after the game.
“We talked about character of the team on how we need to shine through and the guys who need to step up and how we have to play more as a team,” he added.
The Mixers missed Pingris for the second straight game as he served his two-game suspension due to his involvement in the fracas that marred the San Mig-Globalport match last week.
Devance returned after serving a one-game suspension.
Cone describes their day as a “freaky Tuesday” as four Mixers came in around 10 minutes before game time due to the flash floods and heavy traffic caused by heavy rains that struck around rush hour.
“We had four guys who came in the last 10 minutes before the game started. But it wasn’t their fault, it was a freaky thing,” explained the San Mig mentor after his team forged a three-way tie for third place with Rain or Shine and Barako Bull in the standings.
“Marqus was never late for a basketball game. Mark (Barroca) took the LRT. Yancy came in with his pants rolled up because of the flood,” he said.
Cone said they had to asked their driver to pick up Blakely from White Plains via motorcycle to be able to make it in time for the game.
And the 6-5 San Mig import didn’t disappoint after finishing the game with 22 points and 28 rebounds, while issuing eight assists in a near triple-double effort.
Maliksi added 16 while Simon chipped in 13 for the Mixers.
San Mig 95 - Blakely 22, Maliksi 16, Barroca 15, Simon 13, Yap 7, Mallari 6, Devance 6, Reavis 6, Ponferrada 2, De Ocampo 2.
Alaska 82 - McKines 32, Thoss 13, Baguio 9, Espinas 8, Abueva 6, Casio 5, Dela Cruz 4, Jazul 3, Hontiveros 2, Reyes 0.
Quarterscores: 17-22, 48-41, 74-58, 95-82