RED BULL SHOWS NO MERCY VS. PUREFOODS

MANILA, OCTOBER 9, 2003 (MALAYA) Red Bull Barako eased past Purefoods 95-86 last night in a battle between teams with two of the longest streaks in the Samsung PBA Reinforced Conference at the PhilSports Arena.

A barrage of triples off the bat, a sustained attack and an equally strong finish enabled the Thunder to lead by as many as 19 points thrice before cruising to their fifth straight win.

Despite being periodically rested so as not aggravate an injured right big toe that has just healed, Scott Burrell still finished with 20 points, 11 rebounds and five assists as Red Bull jacked its record to 6-2 in Group B.

Not even a full complement of players for the first time in the season-ending conference and game highs of 27 points and 17 rebounds by import Lenny Cooke could lift Purefoods out of its doldrums.

The Hotdogs, group A's cellar-dweller for almost a month now, absorbed their fifth straight loss and seventh in eight games overall.

So in control was Red Bull it could even afford to have stars Davonn Harp, Willie Miller and Jimwell Torion riding the bench while the Hotdogs clambered back from 60-79 down to within seven points twice, the last at 84-91.

"I firmly believed we were going to carry it through to the end," said Thunder coach Yeng Guiao.

Topex Robinson, Junthy Valenzuela and Mick Pennisi proved their coach's trust was well-founded by making the crucial points that tided the Thunder over in the closing seconds.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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