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De Ocampo, Talk ‘N Text torch Rain or Shine, now one win away from championship

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Despite a slow start and facing an early deficit, the Talk ‘N Text Tropang Texters secure a pivotal Game 5 win with a 103-94 finish over the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters and once again take the series lead at 3-2 held at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Friday.

An aggressive Rain or Shine squad showed up in the opening minutes of Game 5 as Paul Lee and Wayne Chism delivered the first baskets in favor of the Painters. RoS built a double-digit spread at 23-13 as TNT’s main duo of Jason Castro and Ivan Johnson struggled in finding their rhythm at the start. Stepping up in the first canto for the Texters were Ranidel de Ocampo who led a 14-3 counter to grab the lead for the first time.

Despite losing grip of their lead early, Jeric Teng knocked down a triple in the last possession for the Painters in the first quarter to take back the lead and take a two-point edge heading into the second.

An exchange of field goals for the two teams occurred in the second period that made the game a close one. However, the Elasto Painters entered the penalty situation with less than 9 minutes to play in the period that Castro and the rest of his team took advantage. Castro knocked down his first basket via a triple to give them a 38-34 lead.

The sizzling perimeter shooting continued for Talk ‘N Text as Larry Fonacier entered double digits in terms of his offensive output with basket from downtown to help TNT threaten to blow the game wide open. Down big, quick to respond was Chism who buried a wide-open triple to stop the bleeding for the Painters and make it a 47-42 game.

Defense was key in the furious rally of TNT late in the first half as they protected the interior that made the scoring slow for the Painters. In addition, the Tropang Texters outscored their opponents 9-0 to enter the break up by 14 huge points.

The outside sniping continued in the third quarter with Johnson and De Ocampo drilling their shots to increase their lead. With physicality starting to take place in the match, mini spurts for Rain or Shine were countered by TNT’s defense anew as the two teams both scored 22 in the period.

In the last period, the team’s second unit were fielded for both teams. Ryan Araña nailed a three pointer in the opening minutes to jumpstart Rain or Shine’s potential rally. However, they were limited by turnovers and 50-50 balls going the way of the Texters. The reinsertion of Ranidel de Ocampo reinstalled a double-digit spread that countered to the Elasto Painters’ 4th quarter buckets.

With less than five minutes to go, Paul Lee scored on a trey that finally breaks the double-digit barrier the Elasto Painters has been attempting to do for majority of the second half. RoS trimmed the lead to five but off a timeout, Kevin Alas made a tough floater while Chris Tiu missed a triple that sealed the victory for Talk ‘N Text.

The Texters shot the ball better at 49% compared to the Painters’ 43%. Talk ‘N Text also committed only seven turnovers while ROS had 15.

Talk ‘N Text looks to bag the Commissioner’s Cup title on Sunday while Rain or Shine seeks to extend it to a rubber match as Game 6 of the series will be played on Sunday, 5pm at the Big Dome.

The scores:

Talk ‘N Text(103) – De Ocampo 27, Johnson 27, Castro 15, Fonacier 12, Carey 7, Alas 7, Aban 4, Washington 2, Ganuelas-Rosser 2, Williams 0

Rain or Shine(94) – Chism 25, Lee 19, Araña 10, Norwood 9, Belga 6, Teng 6, Cruz 6, Tiu 5, Cruz 4, Almazan 4, Uyloan 0, Ibañes 0

Quarters: 27-29, 56-42, 78-64, 103-94

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