ANTIPOLO – Roger Pogoy helped TNT repulse Magnolia, 93-85, to bounce back in the PBA Governors’ Cup, Friday night at the Ynares Center here.
The two-way specialist led the Tropang Giga with 20 points, none bigger than his fadeaway jumper with 1:49 left to cap off an 8-0 run to close the game out after seeing the Hotshots knock to within two twice from 16 down.
Pogoy shot 50-percent and tallied five rebounds, three assists, and three steals to steer the flagship MVP Group franchise to a 3-1 record in the standings.
“Right now, Roger is probably the best two-way player in the league,” offered head coach Jojo Lastimosa. “His offense is humming right now.”
The returning Calvin Oftana came through with 14 points and 10 boards, Mikey Williams also scored 14 while Kelly Williams added 11 as the locals picked it up with Jalen Hudson struggling to find his rhythm on offense.
Hudson did finish with 14 markers, but only shot 4-of-17 from the field, including a 1-of-9 clip from beyond the arc, in nearly 38 minutes of play.
Still, he made a mark down the stretch as the 26-year-old winger triggered the Tropang Giga’s finishing run — a lay-up as a response to Mark Barroca’s bucket on the other end that pulled his Hotshots to within 83-85.
“That was just the big difference there, I think they were smarter today than we were against NLEX,” said Lastimosa as TNT is coming off a 110-108 loss to NLEX last Wednesday that saw the crew blow a 15-point lead.
The Tropa will next battle current leader Converge (4-0) on Wednesday, February 8, 3 p.m. at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.
Paul Lee led Magnolia with 24 points in the loss, including 11 to power his side’s 15-1 rally to slice the gap to 83-81 with under five minutes left.
Calvin Abueva finished with 12 points, nine rebounds, and five assists, while Jio Jalalon added 10 as the locals, similar to TNT’s case, carried more load offensively after Erik McCree was held to only 12 points.
Coming off a 38-point showing against the FiberXers, McCree only went 4-for-9 from the floor and committed eight turnovers. But the 29-year-old tried to make up for it with 16 rebounds, three assists, a steal, and three blocks.
Now at 0-2, Magnolia will look to regain its usual form now that it’s facing the 3-0 San Miguel on Sunday, 4:30 p.m., also at the Big Dome.
TNT 93 – Pogoy 20, M.Williams 14, Hudson 14, Oftana 14, K.Williams 11, Castro 9, Khobuntin 4, Chua 4, Tungcab 3, Varilla 0, Montalbo 0, Ganuelas-Rosser 0.
Magnolia 85 – Lee 24, McCree 12, Abueva 12, Jalalon 10, Escoto 8, Wong 6, Barroca 5, Dionisio 4, Dela Rosa 2,Corpuz 2, Ahanmisi 0.
Quarterscores: 18-21, 52-39, 75-64, 93-85
The second game of each PBA gameday is live-streamed on SMART Sports.