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Balanced offense aids Rain or Shine over Blackwater to share top spot in standings

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The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters cruised to a 102-98 finish over the Blackwater Elites to grab their seventh win of the conference, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Friday afternoon.

The Painters started with a tough defensive theme in mind, as Blackwater missed its first 11 shots of the match. Wayne Chism anchored the defense for Rain or Shine when they limited the Elites to three points, all coming from the freethrow line in the opening minutes. However, too much aggressiveness led to an early exit for Chism as he committed three fouls with five minutes to go in the opening frame. Marcus Douthit scored the first field goal for Blackwater with 6:25 left in the first.

Since Chism got benched, Chris Tiu and Gabe Norwood punched in a triple each, to maintain the small lead they had. Bryan Heruela, who disappeared scoring-wise against Alaska, made baskets on layups as Chism’s absence was felt in the paint. Douthit beat the first quarter buzzer, with a putback on his own miss, to give Blackwater the lead after the first 12 minutes.

Beau Belga split two charity trips to start the second period, but Blackwater scored the game’s next eight points including two triples from Val Acuña. Just like the opening period, Rain or Shine entered the penalty situation early, and as their offense became stagnant, Coach Yeng Guiao fielded in Chism with less than eight minutes to play in the second.

Down by six, the Painters were quick to respond by making an 8-1 run, including a wide-open wing triples from JR Quiñahan and Wayne Chism. The Painters eventually outscored Blackwater, who played Douthit the entire first half, 10-5 to hold the lead entering halftime.

RoS extended their lead to as high as eight, with Norwood and Chism made baskets early in the third. The Elites countered with six straight points by three of their locals to slice the lead quickly. After a timeout, Rain or Shine once again separated themselves and made it a double-digit spread against the Elites, cemented by an alley-oop dunk finish by Norwood off a Jeff Chan feed.

At the start of the fourth quarter, Douthit scored four straight points, trimming the deficit down to single digits. However, Paul Lee drained in a triple, which halted the potential run. When Blackwater’s locals started to struggle with their shot in the payoff period, the squad went almost exclusively to Douthit, as Kuya Marcus tried to lead their comeback against the confident Painters. Furthermore, mini-rallies put up by the Elites were countered easily by the transition offense and three-pointers, which served to be extinguishers and daggers for the Elasto Painters.

The cellar-dwelling Elites retained their bottom position in the standings with a 2-8 slate, while Rain or Shine grabs a share of the top spot with Purefoods and Talk ‘N Text at 7-3.

Chism finished with 30 points and 13 rebounds while Paul Lee continued his double-digit scoring streak in the conference with 14 points including two triples. Douthit had 34 points, 19 rebounds and dished out eight dimes in a full 48-minute effort.

The Painters scored plus 15 from downtown ,and outscored their counterparts, 25-15 in fastbreak finishes. All players from RoS scored at least a point except Jeric Teng.

The scores:

Rain or Shine (102) – Chism 30, Lee 14, Belga 11, Tiu 10, Norwood 8, Tang 6, Quiñahan 5, Cruz 4, Almazan 4, Uyloan 3, Ibañes 2, Araña 2, Chan 1, Teng 0

Blackwater (98) – Douthit 34, Acuña 20, Heruela 15, Gamalinda 11, Reyes 6, Faundo 4, Canada 2, Rodriguez 2, Celiz 2, Erram 0, Laure 0, Balleteros 0

Quarters: 18-20, 46-41, 78-65, 102-98

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