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Tiebreaker Times


PBA: Calvo, Tiongson take command as Terrafirma springs upset vs NLEX

Terrafirma outlasted NLEX, 99-95, for a 2-0 start in the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup, Sunday at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.

Free throws by Isaac Go and JP Calvo inside the game’s last 58.8 seconds proved enough for the Dyip to ward off the Road Warriors, eventually joining Blackwater on top of the team standings as the two tote identical records.

The last time Terrafirma began 2-0 was in the 2016 Governors’ Cup, when the franchise, then known as Mahindra, went on a 4-0 start under then-coach Chris Gavina. It was also the only time that the team reached the playoffs.

It is also the first time ever that the Bossing and the Dyip are both 2-0 in the standings, according to league stats chief Fidel Mangonon III.

“‘Di namin iniisip na may dalawang panalo na kami kasi baka magrelax eh. So every game kailangan 1-0, 1-0, hanggang sa makuha namin ‘yung goal namin, [which is] to go into the quarterfinals,” said head coach Johnedel Cardel.

Main man Juami Tiongson bannered Terrafirma’s balanced attack with 21 points, on top of two rebounds, three assists, and a steal.

Javi Gomez de Liano produced 18 points. Stephen Holt continued his fine play and finished with 17 points, seven rebounds, four assists, and four steals.

Calvo made the most of his starting gig and finished with 16 points for the Dyip, which overcame a deficit as big as 13, 39-26, during the second quarter.

Terrafirma will have five days to prepare before shooting for a 3-0 record against TNT (1-1) on Saturday, March 9, 3 p.m. still at the Big Dome.

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Robert Bolick, on the other hand, had a game-high 29 points, five rebounds, and eight assists to lead NLEX, who fell to 1-1 following the loss.

Jhan Nermal added 15 as he was the only other double-digit scorer for the Road Warriors, which held an 87-86 lead with 5:49 left to play until free throws by Calvo and a jumper by Holt brought momentum to the other side.

NLEX will look to redeem itself against Converge on March 9 as well in the 7:30 p.m. nightcap of another Araneta double-header offering.

The Scores:

Terrafirma 99 – Tiongson 21, Gomez de Liano 18, Holt 17, Calvo 16, Alolino 9, Go 7, Ramos 3. Cahilig 0, Camson 0, Mina 0.

NLEX 95 – Bolick 29, Nermal 15, Valdez 9, Miranda 7, Ular 7, Anthony 6, Semerad 6, Nieto 6, Marcelo 4, Pascual 4, Herndon 2.

Quarterscores: 21-26, 47-57, 70-73, 99-95.

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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