Looking to stop their three game skid, the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters poured all their frustrations into their match against the NLEX Road Warriors for a 121-94 rout, to return to the win column in the 2016 PBA Commissioners Cup Tournament.
The Elasto Painters limited the the Road Warriors to just four field goals midway through the first quarter for a 23-8 lead. Through Sean Anthony and import Al Thornton, NLEX were able to claw their way back and cut the deficit to just seven, 29-22, to enter the second frame.
Just as the Road Warriors were gaining momentum, the shock troopers of the Elasto Painters made their mark in the second quarter. Jewel Ponferada and Raymond Almazan powered their way through the paint, while Maverick Ahanmisi and Jeff Chan connected from the outside, as Rain or Shine took a 58-43 lead by the break.
“We finally got our rhythm back,” Rain or Shine head coach Yeng Guiao said. “But I hope it’s not too late. We got our running game back, we got our passing game back, we also got our rebounding game back.”
The Elasto Painters continued to pour it on in the second half. The tight Rain or Shine defense forced NLEX into 22 turnovers for 30 turnover points. Moreover, the troika of Thornton, Anthony, and Asi Taulava struggled for rebounds against the deep Rain or Shine frontline as the lead grew to a game-high 29 points, 117-98, before ending at 121-94.
Guiao admitted after the game that the goal of the team had been to break their losing streak. He hopes that the team can build on this morale-boosting win, saying, “just win one and then we can talk about the next. We achieved our objective.”
Antoine Wright led seven players in double-figures with a game-high 20 points. He almost notched a triple-double with nine boards and seven dimes. The twin tower combination of Ponferada and Almazan scored 15 and 14 points respectively.
The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (2-3) next face the San Miguel Beermen on Friday, March 11 at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum. On the other hand, the NLEX Road Warriors (2-3) look to bounce back on the same day against the Meralco Bolts.
Rain or Shine (121) – Wright 20, Ponferada 15, Almazan 14, Chan 12, Cruz 12, Quinahan 12, Ahanmisi 10, Teng 9, Norwood 8, Belga 3, Tiu 3, Matias 2, Trollano 1.
NLEX (94) – Thornton 19, Anthony 17, Taulava 14, Reyes 12, Villanueva 10, Enciso 7, Lanete 7, Alas 4, Cardona 2, Khobuntin 2.
Quarterscores: 29-22, 58-43, 85-70, 121-94.