Alaska opens Philippine Cup with rout of Blackwater

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The Alaska Aces had a resounding debut as they dropped the Blackwater Bossings, 103-77, in the opening game of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup on Friday at the Ynares Arena in Pasig City.

Tied at 39-all at halftime, Alaska suddenly came alive in the third canto where they unleashed a huge 32-18 blast anchored on the scoring exploits of Mike Digregorio to bring a 71-57 lead to the final canto.

The Bossings briefly threatened in the fourth, pulling to within six, 70-76, after a layup by Mike Tolomia. However, Digregorio and Jvee Casio answered with consecutive three-pointers to douse the fire and bring Alaska’s lead back to double-figures.

Digregorio came off the bench and tallied 20 points, five rebounds and two assists while big man Yousef Taha was also a sparkplug, producing 16 points and grabbing seven boards. Abu Tratter added 13 markers and six rebounds for the Aces, which played without top sophomore and Cebuano big man Barkley Eboña who sat out with an injury.

Simon Enciso, who was red-hot in the first half with 19 points, paced Blackwater with 23 markers. Tolomia chipped in 15 while Ed Daquioag added 12. (JNP)