Ray Parks and KJ McDaniels starred in the endgame as TNT ended the reign of Magnolia, 98-97, to advance to the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup semifinals Monday night at SMART Araneta Coliseum.
Parks took advantage of Hotshots center Rafi Reavis’ blunder of fouling him near the rim as he calmly made both of his free throws with seven seconds remaining to give the lead to KaTropa.
McDaniels, meanwhile, did his part on the defensive end by swatting away the potential game-winning lay-up of counterpart Romeo Travis with 1.1 ticks left on the game clock.
The whole Texters then prevented the opposition from turning Mark Barroca’s inbound pass into an opportunity to complete their comeback from a deep 18-point deficit in the second period
“Wala, suwerte lang. Lahat naman, nakita natin. ‘Di namin ine-expect na makakabalik pa kami. Iniisip namin next game na lang ulit. But maybe it’s God’s plan,” said coach Bong Ravena.
Jayson Castro set the pace for the KaTropa with 30 points and seven assists as he orchestrated his side’s fightback from an 87-96 deficit with 3:14 remaining in the game.
McDaniels finished with 25 points, 17 rebounds, five assists, and five blocks while Troy Rosario added 12 markers, including the triple that tied the game at 96 with 32.7 seconds left.
TNT will face Allen Durham and sister team Meralco Bolts in a best-of-five semifinal series.
Former Best Import Travis led the erstwhile defending champs with 32 points and 26 rebounds with four blocks.
Rome Dela Rosa supplied 13 points, Jio Jalalon made 12 points and six boards while Paul Lee chipped in 11 markers.
“Ang hirap ng conference namin … May mga games kami na we controlled for forty six minutes and then the last minutes, nawawala sa amin,” lamented coach Chito Victolero.
TNT 98 – Castro 30, McDaniels 25, Rosario 12, Reyes 10, Pogoy 8, Parks 7, Digregorio 6, Williams 0.
Magnolia 97 – Travis 32, Dela Rosa 13, Jalalon 12, Lee 11, Barroca 9, Banchero 8, Sangalang 7, Pingris 4, Melton 1, Reavis 0.
Quarterscores: 22-26, 48-54, 68-80, 98-97.