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Rain or Shine averts massive meltdown, blows TNT’s twice-to-beat incentive


The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters had to survive a comeback attempt by the TNT Katropa to blow the latter’s twice-to-beat edge, 106-102, in their 2017 Governor’s Cup quarterfinal meeting, Wednesday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.

With the result, a deciding match will take place this Friday, September 29, at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.

“I just told the players before the game that for them, they’re allowed to lose the game and us, we have to win for us to survive,” said RoS coach Caloy Garcia. “I told them from the beginning we’re a good match-up against TNT.

“I believe that we’re almost running the same system, so it’s all about who wants it more on the defensive side,” the first-year head coach pointed out.

Six Elasto Painters contributed in the well-deployed attack, with J’Nathan Bullock spearheading with 31 points with 15 rebounds. Gabe Norwood had 15 points, nine boards, and six assists, while Raymond Almazan had 13 and eight.

Rain or Shine was already ahead comfortably, 102-82, with 6:27 remaining in the final quarter, but the lead was wiped out as TNT exploded for an 18-2 run — ended by Glen Rice, Jr.’s freebies — to make it a four-point game, 104-100, with 51.4 ticks left.

Luckily for the Elasto Painters, the breaks of the game favored their side. Gabe Norwood was able to regain a key steal by Troy Rosario, and Maverick Ahanmisi’s split with 33 seconds to go widened RoS’ lead, 105-100.

Rice, Jr. managed to punch in a two-handed slam, 105-102, but 30 seconds were not enough for another run. Norwood’s own split with less than 19 ticks to go — plus TNT’s missed shots — avoided the near-collapse.

#ReadMore  Chris Tiu relieved to have broken personal slump with career-best performance

“They were able to adjust and they caught us also by surprise,” rued Garcia of the TNT fightback. “Probably it’s just because others are tired already and yun nawala yung intensity namin when we made the substitution.”

“We just have to prepare again for Friday’s game and probably try to do something new that they haven’t seen also. So parang ano lang yan, basically, strategy-strategy na lang ang labanan dyan,” he added.

Ahanmisi, Chris Tiu, and Don Trollano all added 10 points apiece for Rain or Shine.

All the Katropa’s starters finished in double figures, headed by Kelly Williams’ 23 points and 10 caroms. Jayson Castro supplied 22, while Rice, Jr. finished with 19 markers and 10 rebounds as well. Anthony Semerad also scored 19.

The Elasto Painters shot 44 percent from the floor, but they made it rain from deep as they made 16 triples. Moreover, they also dished out 26 assists. However, they committed 17 errors, which led to 27 points for TNT.

The Scores:

Rain or Shine 106 – Bullock 31, Norwood 15, Almazan 13, Ahanmisi 10, Trollano 10, Cruz 8, Belga 5, Borboran 2, Daquioag 2, Ponferada 0.

TNT 102 – Williams 23, Castro 22, Semerad 19, Rice 19, Rosario 10, Pogoy 7, Seigle 2, Tautuaa 0.

Quarterscores: 26-28; 52-47; 84-75; 106-102.

Written By

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


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