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Basketball

Phoenix survives another OT game, outlasts TNT


Another night, another 53-minute game for Phoenix.

After figuring in an overtime battle against Meralco just three days ago, the Fuel Masters again needed extra time to take a victory. They dug deep against a determined TNT Katropa, 93-84, Saturday evening at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

“Two overtimes in two games. Nakakapagod,” admitted Phoenix head coach Louie Alas.

“But it’s a very good experience for us,” added the second year Phoenix mentor.

Scorching hot entering overtime, TNT cooled down in the extra five minutes. Matthew Wright, Alex Mallari, and Calvin Abueva took turns exposing the Katropa’s defense to gain an 91-82 lead with 30 ticks left.

Wright led the way for Phoenix with 23 points, six rebounds, four assists, and two steals. Mallari had 15 points, four assists, and three boards, while Abueva tallied a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds to go along with four steals and a block.

With the game already out of reach, Michael Miranda threw a closed fist at Justin Chua with 10 seconds left that resulted in his ejection.

Phoenix went to 2-0 with the win, while dropping TNT to 0-2. Moreover, the Fuel Masters became the first PBA team in four years to start a conference with two overtime games, or since Meralco did the same against Barako Bull and Blackwater back in the 2015 Philippine Cup.

Roger Pogoy paced TNT with 30 points, 17 of which came in the final frame. His seventh triple with 55 ticks left in regulation sent the game into overtime. The FEU standout also had 12 boards.

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Jayson Castro had 18 points for TNT, a squad that went 11-of-49 from downtown.

Both Phoenix and TNT return to the hard court on Wednesday, January 23. The Fuel Masters will face the Columbian Dyip, while the KaTropa take on the NLEX Road Warriors at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.


The Scores:

Phoenix 93 – Wright 23, Mallari 15, Abueva 14, Perkins 11, Chua 7, Revilla 7, Intal 7, Kramer 2, Guevarra 2, Napoles 2, Dennison 2, Marcelo 1, Jazul 0, Gamboa 0, Mendoza 0.

TNT 84 – Pogoy 30, Castro 18, Miranda 11, Semerad 9, Heruela 8, Reyes 4, Williams 2, Taha 2, Carey 0, Trollano 0.

Quarterscores: 11-16, 25-26, 56-54, 79-79, 93-84.

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