Alaska rallied back from a double-digit deficit to turn back Petron Blaze, 93-88, to move closer for a spot in the next round of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup Wednesday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Bonbon Custodio had key baskets in the end while Adam Parada pulled down a crucial offensive rebound in the closing seconds as the Aces improved their mark to 4-3.
Parada finished with a team-high 22 points and got plenty of support from the locals led by Cyrus Baguio and Custodio.
Baguio had 19 markers while Custodio chipped in 17 on 8-of-14 shooting from the field.
“We anticipated from the start that we know Petron will come out and play a playoff-like game,” said Alaska head coach Joel Banal.
“At the half, I was trying to convince the team that if we don’t play a physical game, we can’t win,” he added.
Petron tried to pull away after erecting a 56-45 lead early in the third when Baguio and Parada joined forces and closed out the period with a 20-10 exchange to cut the lead to just one entering the fourth.
Alaska scored the first seven points of the final canto to seize control of the game, 72-66.
Mac Baracael’s three-pointer gave the Aces an 81-73 lead but the Boosters responded with an 11-2 run to reclaim the lead, 84-83, 2:20 remaining.
After Parada hit two free throws, Custodio added back-to-back baskets for an 89-84 advantage with 59.2 seconds remaining.
Arwind Santos hit a jumper for the Boosters, 86-89, but LA Tenorio sank a free throw off of a technical on Fazekas, 90-86.
Santos hit another basket, 88-90, but Custodio was sent to the 15-foot line by Cabagnot. Custodio hit the first but missed the second.
Lucky for Alaska, Parada was there to collar the offensive board and Tenorio sealed the win with two free throws.
Fazekas led all scorers with 33 points for the Boosters, who lost two in a row to slip in the team standings with 3-4 mark.
ALASKA 93 – Parada 22, Baguio 19, Custodio 17, Thoss 14, Tenorio 11, Baracael 6, Reyes 2, Eman 1, Gelig 1, Salamat 0.
PETRON 88 – Fazekas 33, Santos 14, Yeo 11, Cabagnot 10, Ildefonso 9, Guevarra 6, Miranda 5, Reyes 0.
Quarters: 18-27, 43-52, 65-66, 93-88