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Giants derail Realtors in Surigao del Norte

Purefoods caught up with Sta. Lucia at fifth place halfway through the KFC PBA Philippine Cup double-round elimination phase as the Giants topped the Realtors, 68-63, in their out-of-town duel at the Robert Barbers Memorial Sports Center in Surigao del Norte last night.

The Giants outperformed the Realtors in a low-scoring game and forced a tie between themselves with identical 5-4 win-loss records going into the second round of play.

The second round starts today with Purefoods and Sta. Lucia trailing league leader Alaska (8-1) by three games, second-running San Miguel Beer (7-2) by two and joint third placers Talk n Text (6-3) and Ginebra (6-3) by one.

Alaska and San Miguel take on Barako Bull and Burger King, respectively, at the Ynares Arena in Pasig today.

The Aces walloped the Energy Boosters, 99-83, while the Beermen whipped Whoppers, 117-99, in their first-round meetings.

Burger King starts the second round at 3-6 while Barako Bull is tied with Rain or Shine at 2-7 with Coca-Cola at the bottom of the heap at 1-8.

The last placer after the two rounds misses the playoff phase in this all-Filipino tourney topped by Talk n Text last year.

The Purefoods breached the .500 mark halfway through the elims as the Giants sustained their win-loss-win-loss ride in the tourney, emerging triumphant in the Surigao del Norte stop of the Phoenix Fuel PBA on Tour.

Kerby Raymundo and James Yap scored the first two baskets of the game and the Giants held on to the lead to the finish.

The Giants took the first quarter at 18-13, sat on a 33-26 cushion at halftime and roared to their biggest spread at 46-31 before completing the wire-to-wire win.

The Realtors came out flat from a six-day respite and suffered a first loss in their last three games.

Sta. Lucia ace guard Ryan Reyes struggled for only six points while key off-season acquisition Gabby Espinas went scoreless for the first time in an SLR jersey.

Kerby Raymundo led the Giants with 15 points with Paul Artadi and Roger Yap adding 10 apiece. Kelly Williams paced the Realtors with 16. (Philstar.com)

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