Crispa avenged its first round defeat to Toyota with a lopsided victory to cap off the eliminations of the 1976 PBA Second Conference. Their match overshadowed a then-record 75 points by Harry Rogers for 7-Up hours earlier against Fiberlite.
Crispa clobbers Toyota, 123-97
7-Up's Rogers fires 75
By Ding Marcelo
Published Wednesday Oct. 27, 1976
Crispa tore Toyota's game to pieces last night, handing its bitter rival a 123-97 shellacking as the Denims gained a psychological edge going into tomorrow's start of the Philippine Basketball Association second conference semifinals at the Araneta Coliseum.
Some 23,000 spectators were on hand to witness the massacre as the Denims, smarting from the absence of ace gunner William Adornado, took control of the game from the second quarter on to avenge a 98-95 loss to the Comets in the first round.
An unanswered 13-point explosion by Crispa at the start of the second quarter set the tone of the evening's one-sided match as the Denims took a 10-point 40-30 lead from a 27-30 first quarter deficit.
Though the Comets narrowed the gap as quickly behind Robert Jaworski and Ramon Fernandez, 42-41, the Denims retaliated swiftly to pull away at the half, 53-45, from where they were never again threatened.
Crispa's cool and murderous efficiency was so compelling that Toyota coach Dante Silverio gave up the game with still six minutes left by pulling out Francis Arnaiz and Jaworski within second of each other, followed later by Byron “Snake” Jones.
So fired up was Crispa that three Filipinos had better scores that the talented Cyrus Mann whose intimidating control of the boards was even better by the exemplary performance of William Bunton.
“We played a swell game while the Comets obviously were in one of their off nights,” said Crispa coach Baby Dalupan who told his boys not to be complacent as the more important games lie ahead.
Completely outshadowed by Crispa's revenge victory over Toyota was Harry Rogers' record-setting 75 point performance as Seven-Up vanquished Fibertlite, 137-134, in the first game.
Rogers' output erased the two-week-old record of Carl Bird who sizzled for 73 points when Royal Tru-Orange outplayed N-Rich, 165-129, last Oct. 12. Rogers had 33 field goals and nine foul shots.
Fortunato Co typified Crispa's offensive excellence as he unloaded 25 points, scoring many of them off difficult situations, while Alfredo Hubalde again ably pinch-hitting for the injured Adornado, followed him with 18 points. Bernard Fabiosa added 17 points, most of them in the last quarter when the Denims took their biggest lead, a 28-pointer at 121-93.
Mann, who claimed he still had to reach his peak, banged in 15 and pulled down 12 rebounds while Bunton had 10 points aside from a game-high 17 rebounds. Crispa had an overall 44-36 edge against Toyota off the boards.
Crispa's American imports definitely were better than Toyota's as Jones and Howard Smith hauled in only seven rebounds apiece while contributing 18 and 6 points, respectively.
Arnaiz led all Toyota scorers with 19 points.
The defeat was only Toyota's second in the eliminations while the victory was Crispa's 12th in 16 games, the same record held by U-Tex.
Crispa – 123
P. Cezar 13
Toyota – 97
Crispa 27 26 31 39 – 123
Toyota 30 15 22 30 – 97
Refs: E. Cruz, F. Santarina