Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Petron Blaze holds back the Rain (or Shine Elasto Painters)

This appears in

Petron holds back the Rain
by rick olivares photo by nuki sabio

November 13, 2011
Smart Araneta Coliseum

Petron showed the young whippersnappers a terrifying display of firepower. And when Rain or Shine showed that they are ready to ascend to the throne by sparking a huge run that saw then cut a 27-point deficit to eight 75-83 with 2:29 left in the game, the Blaze Boosters served up one more lesson – championship poise and endgame verve.

After the Charles Barkley-esque JR Quiñahan (in terms of his physique that belies his wondrous talent) scored on an and-one off Petron Chris Lutz to come within eight at 75-83 (he missed the free throw), Alex Cabagnot surveyed his options before he launched a trey that eased the pressure for his team 86-75. Although Gabe Norwood went right back with another bonus-situation, the slam dunking former George Mason University Patriot flubbed the free throw.

In the opposite end, Petron’s Arwind Santos, at the height of his PBA powers, tacked on a pair of free throws to make it 88-78. Then he brilliantly hounded Rain or Shine’s sterling rookie Paul Lee before he took the ball away. Passing off to Cabagnot, the Petron point guard rewarded Santos with a return dish for a monster two-handed slam for an emphatic game ender, 90-80.

The Blaze Boosters showed their experience but it was a rookie who inspired Ato Agustin’s squad to an early lead when Chris Lutz, the former Smart Gilas forward scored 11 points in the first half and exhibited fiery play on both ends of the court.

With Petron up 44-23 with seconds left in the first half, Petron had the ball to map out one final play. Rain or Shine’s brilliant head coach Yeng Guiao glanced at the Blaze Boosters’ bench seemingly irked. He looked at his squad and barked, “Whatever happens do not let them score in this play,” he barked. “Foul niyo kung foul pero no score.”

Petron did not score and it would take more than a quarter for Rain or Shine to wake up from their stupor. By the time they did, there wasn’t enough time to overhaul the lead. Outside the Petron locker room, Agustin praised his team’s effort in the first half and their endgame poise. “Good start pero nawala sa focus nung fourth quarter,” said Agustin. “Hindi naman sa sinasabi natin na hindi kaya ng Rain or Shine dahil nakita naman natin kung ano kaya nila. But we have to keep our focus sa buong 48 minutes. Arwind and Alex came through sa huli and yan ang gusto natin sa mga veterans.”

The loss of the Elasto Painters saw them drop to second place 7-2 while idle Talk ‘n Text stayed on top with a 6-1 record. Petron’s win placed them at solo third with a 6-3 record.

Petron Blaze 90Santos 25, Lutz 22, Cabagnot 16, Yeo 14, Miranda 4, Ildefonso 4, Reyes 3, Agustin 2, Doruelo 0, Baclao 0, Sharma 0.

Rain or Shine 80Chan 15, Quiñahan 15, Belga 9, Rodriguez 9, Norwood 8, Buenafe 8, Lee 6, Matias 5, Araña 5, Cruz 0, Ibañez 0.

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