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PBA: Stockton provides magic spark as Converge sends Blackwater skidding for 4th straight win

ANTIPOLO – Converge found an unlikely spark down the stretch in frustrating Blackwater, 77-71, to extend its winning streak to four in the 2022-23 PBA Commissioner’s Cup, Sunday evening at the Ynares Center here.

Alec Stockton came through with a career-high 15 points, none bigger than the six points he made to power the telling 10-2 run en route to a 74-68 lead with 1:38 left to leave the Bossing dejected after leading for most of the match.

The Far Eastern University product also hauled down eight rebounds in the victory that improved the FiberXers’ card to 5-2 in the standings.

“It’s big,” lauded head coach Aldin Ayo of Stockton. “Alec is part of the second group, and he’s been working really, really hard dun sa laro niya.”

Quincy Miller led Converge with 22 points and 19 rebounds, helping his side close out the match despite being hounded by five personal fouls.

Abu Tratter was the other double-digit scorer with 12 points and 10 rebounds as the trio stepped up big on a night the FiberXers did not have the same accuracy it had two nights ago against TNT that saw them nail 21 triples.

They made just 32 of their 99 shots against Blackwater, including a 4-of-35 clip from downtown — two from Tratter, and one from Miller and Aljun Melecio.

Still, they managed to overcome such an atrocious shooting night, in the process sending the Bossing to their second loss in a row — the first time in this mid-season conference that they lost in consecutive fashion.

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“We started flat, I think, because of the fatigue. I think our legs were heavy. I was expecting that we were able to recover on that one-day rest [after the TNT game] but I think they haven’t recovered yet before this game,” said Ayo.

“We were not able to get the pace that we usually have, so we relied on our halfcourt execution. And, I think we defended them pretty well especially during the last stretch,” added the young bench tactician.

Now tied for the current longest active winning streak in the league with Phoenix Super LPG (4-3), Converge hopes to make it five straight against NLEX on Saturday, November 5, at 4:30 at the Ynares Center as well.

Cameron Krutwig, on the other hand, led Blackwater with 16 points and 15 rebounds in the loss that dropped the team to 11th in the standings at 3-5

Rey Suerte had 15 points, Ato Ular had 13 points and eight rebounds, while Yousef Taha chimed in 10 markers for a Bossing crew that was without lead guard Baser Amer (calf injury) and Rashawn McCarthy (flu).

Blackwater hopes to get back on track immediately when it faces 2-seed Magnolia next Sunday, 4:30 p.m. at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.

The Scores:

Converge 77 – Miller 22, Stockton 15, Tratter 12, Arana 8, Teng 8, Melecio 3, Ilagan 6, DiGregorio 2, Ahanmisi 1, Murrell 0, Tolomia 0, Racal 0.

Blackwater 71 – Krutwig 16, Suerte 15, Ular 13, Taha 10, Melton 6, Banal 3, Ebona 3, Ayonayon 3, Go 2, Jackson 0, Sena 0, Publico 0.

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Quarterscores: 18-19, 34-32, 59-59, 77-71.

The second game of each PBA gameday is live-streamed on SMART Sports.

Written By

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

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