Leader San Miguel remains cautious vs lowly Barako Bull

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Leader San Miguel remains cautious vs lowly Barako Bull Empty Leader San Miguel remains cautious vs lowly Barako Bull

MANILA, Philippines – Up against the worst team in the Motolite-PBA Fiesta Cup, league-leader San Miguel Beer appears assured already of clinching the first outright semifinals seat when it tangles with Barako Bull Friday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo.

Coach Siot Tanquingcen however, is not about to take chances. “Make no mistake about it; they (Energy Boosters) are dangerous. They may have suffered a lot of losses but if you look closely at the results, the outcomes have been close."

That’s enough reason for the league leader to play with urgency going into their 5:00 p.m. showdown with the Energy Boosters.

“We can’t take them for granted," said Tanquingcen of Barako Bull. “The last thing you would want is to be complacent against a team like Barako Bull."

In its last game, San Miguel Beer failed to corner the outright semis berth after dropping a 107-105 overtime game to Burger King.

Owning a 9-2 (win-loss) record with still three games left before the elimination round is over, San Miguel Beer can secure the first allotted slot in the Final Four with a victory over the Energy Boosters, a team that has lost their last seven games and one that has not tasted victory in nearly two months.

The Barako Bull last claimed victory on March 22 – an epic 135-133 win over Talk ‘N Text where the Energy Boosters clawed back from 24 points with merely nine minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.

The Energy Boosters appeared to be on the verge of an upset against Rain or Shine. But import Daryan Selvy fouled out with a little less than two minutes left, and the team committed key turnovers down the stretch in a 103-97 defeat.

Rain or Shine, on the other hand, seeks to further enhance its chances of landing in the Top 2 spots when it goes for its ninth win in battling the Coca-Cola Tigers.

The Elasto Painters are in solo second spot with an 8-5 slate, and a win over the unpredictable Tigers would create the needed gap over defending champion Ginebra and Purefoods, which both hold 7-5 records.

Rain or Shine sees action for the second time in three days after beating Barako Bull last Wednesday. And coach Caloy Garcia sees a tough and rough game ahead against a team aiming not to fall at ninth or 10th spots after the preliminary round.

“Coca-Cola is a tough team," Garcia said. “That’s a team with veteran players and a good import. It’s going to be another hard test for us." – GMANews.TV

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