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Returning Paul Lee shines as Rain or Shine demolishes Pacquiao-less Kia



Getting much needed help from the newly-recovered Paul Lee, the shorthanded Rain or Shine Elasto Painters denied the Kia Sorento their second win, whipping the absent Manny Pacquiao’s squad, 117-88, Wednesday night at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Elasto Painters found themselves with the 8-0 lead early in the quarter, with Kia unable to immediately find the means to fire back at RoS’ offensive salvo. Complementing their hot shooting with success at the free throw line, Rain or Shine closed out the quarter with the 36-25 edge. The Elasto Painters’ unstoppabe salvo would continue well into the second quarter, burying Kia by as much as 19 points, 49-31, with eight and a half minutes left on the clock.

Led by Reil Cervantes, Kia were eventually able to trim the lead to single digits, 41-50, after finally finding the right stops to disrupt the Elasto Painters’ seamless transition offense. However, the return of Paul Lee to the court after having sat out the past week due to injury gave Rain or Shine the means to pull away once more late in the quarter. The former UE Red Warrior exploded for seven points, helping the Elasto Painters to 59-46 edge at halftime.

The third quarter told the same tale, with the Elasto Painters still comfortably in the driver’s seat for the entirety of the quarter despite another feisty showing from the PBA’s newcomers. Led by Jervy Cruz, the Elasto Painters closed out the third quarter with the 81-65 lead. Paul Lee and JR Quinahan would collaborate early in the fourth quarter to put Rain or Shine up by the 20s, 86-65, two minutes into the final period. The next few minutes saw another explosion from the returning star, and in the next few minutes, Kia would find themselves in a 29-point hole. The Elasto Painters would then go on to bombard Kia in every possession, and a basket from Jeric Teng in the final minute pushed Rain or Shine to the 31-point lead. At the end of the quarter, the Elasto Painters walked away with the 117-86 victory, dealing Kia their second straight blowout loss.

Paul Lee paced the Elasto Painters with 22 points and 4 rebounds off the bench, sinking four of six three-point attempts. Beau Belga added 16 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assists. Reil Cervantes led Kia with 18 points and 8 rebounds, while Alvin Padilla added 17 points.
With the win Rain or Shine rise to 2-1. Kia, meanwhile, who played without head coach and first round pick Manny Pacquiao, fall to 1-2.

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