By JONAS TERRADO
NorthPort gave team manager Bonnie Tan a victory in his debut as interim coach after clobbering Blackwater, 98-73, Thursday, Sept. 9 in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Don Honorio Ventura State University in Bacolor, Pampanga.
Robert Bolick sparked a third quarter blitz that allowed the Batang Pier to win their first game in Bacolor after failing to see action last week due to the league’s health and safety protocols.
The Batang Pier moved to eighth place at 2-3 despite missing coach Pido Jarencio and his staff who are still under quarantine due to COVID-19.
Tan, who called the shots on the day he celebrated his birthday, downplayed his role in the win.
“When I watched them practice for the first time, nakita ko yung positive aspect nila sa pagiging coach-less, yung walang nagcocoach sa kanila,” said Tan.
Bolick was one of three NorthPort players who posted a double-double, registered 17 points and 10 rebounds while dishing out three assists. His eight points in the third helped the Batang Pier gain a commanding 75-49 lead after going into halftime up 45-40.
Sean Anthony also had a hand in that big quarter by the Batang Pier with seven of his nine during that stretch.
NorthPort scored 30 points on 50-percent shooting in the third while forcing Blackwater to just 13 on a miserable 4-of-16 clip).
The Batang Pier would lead by as many as 33 when three free throws by Garvo Lanete made it 95-62 with over three minutes remaining in the match.
Rookie Jamie Malonzo had 17 points and 12 rebounds while Greg Slaughter added 12 points and 11 rebounds. Kevin Ferrer was NorthPort’s other player in double figures with 14.
Frank Golla and Richard Escoto had 14 and 10 points but Blackwater fell to a dismal 0-8 record this conference.
The Bossing, playing without key players Kelly Nabong and Baser Amer, also lost for the 16th straight time dating back to last season’s Philippine Cup.
NORTHPORT 98 — Bolick 17, Malonzo 17, Ferrer 14, Slaughter 12, Anthony 9, Lanete 9, Onwubere 8, Balanza 2, Taha 7, Grey 2, Faundo 1, Elorde 0, Doliguez 0, Subido 0.
BLACKWATER 73 — Golla 14, Escoto 10, Cruz 9, Desiderio 8, Enciso 8, Daquioag 7, Torralba 7, Magat 5, Tolomia 5, Escoto 4, Canaleta 0, Dennison 0, Paras 0.
Quarters: 25-20, 45-40, 75-53, 98-73.