PBA: Vic Manuel leads Phoenix to first win of season vs. old team Alaska

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 24) – Vic Manuel delivered his best performance so far for his new team as he led the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters to their first win in the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup.

The Fuel Masters dominated the Alaska Aces, 101-93, Saturday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

Manuel's superb outing came at the right time while facing his former team - tallying a double-double effort of 26 points and 12 rebounds.

RJ Jazul added 19 points while rookie Aljun Melecio contributed 13 markers for the Fuel Masters.

In the first quarter, Alaska showed their offensive prowess by relying mostly on their bigs like Rodney Brondial and Abu Tratter in getting points in the paint for a 26-18 lead.

Phoenix unleashed their momentum in the second quarter and outscored Alaska, 35-16, as Manuel took for a 53-42 lead at halftime.

The Fuel Masters continued their scoring barrage in the third quarter as they ended the period with their biggest lead in the game, 84-61.

The Aces tried to come back late in the fourth quarter - trimming their opponents' lead down to single digits. But it was not enough to steal the spotlight from the Fuel Masters.

Phoenix won the game despite missing the services of star players Matthew Wright and Chris Banchero due to injuries incurred in team practices.

"It was a total team effort. Players really competed and grinded it out with Alaska," said head coach Topex Robinson, who was also a former player and assistant coach for the Aces before joining the Fuel Masters in 2017.

A big factor for Phoenix's win is their 15 three-point shots converted in the game - four of them from Jazul.

Gab Banal scored 17 points for Alaska, who fell to a 1-2 slate tied with Phoenix and NLEX.

The Scores:

PHOENIX 101– Manuel 26, Jazul 19, Melecio 13, Perkins 12, Pascual 10, Rios 9, Garcia 5, Chua 7, Muyang 0, Demusis 0, Tamsi 0

ALASKA 93 – Banal 17, Tratter 14, Herndon 13, Taha 9, DiGregorio 8, Teng 8, Adamos 7, Brondial 6, Ahanmisi 5, Casio 2, Stockton 2, Marcelino 0

Quarterscores: 18-26, 53-42, 84-61, 101-93