Conquering the giants: E-Painters slay Petron
MANILA, Philippines – Jervy Cruz scored 6 points in extra time while Paul Lee drained the dagger 3 as Rain or Shine dealt Petron its first loss, 99-95, in the PLDT myDSL PBA Philippine Cup on Saturday, December 21 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.
With the Elasto Painters up by 1, 94-93, Lee drained a deep 3 from the left corner to give his team a 97-93 edge with just 36.2 seconds left in overtime.
An Arwind Santos jumper cut the deficit to two, 95-97, before Lee iced the game with two free throws in the final 8.8 seconds. The Boosters lost possession in their final play, allowing ROS to escape.
The former UAAP MVP tied his career-high in points with 23 and also pulled down 12 rebounds, while Lee added 15 points and 7 boards.
"We just had to grind it out. We played a bad first half but we made up for it in the second half," said Rain or Shine head coach Yeng Guiao, who lauded his crew for an excellent job in the rebounding department.
"We lost 17 rebounds to TNT. We promised ourselves not to lose by that much in rebounding. I think we were just more aggressive. We re-focused on winning the game," he said.
Rain or Shine outrebounded Petron, 66-61.
The Elasto Painters erased a huge gap early in the match and took an 84-81 edge in the 4th period. Alex Cabagnot and Marcio Lassiter then hit baskets to give Petron the 85-84 lead.
JR Quinahan then had a scintillating fly-by move which faked Santos and June Mar Fajardo as he converted on a 3-point play to push the Elasto Painters ahead, 87-85.
Chris Lutz then hit two free throws on the other end to knot it at 87-all. Rain or Shine nearly escaped in regulation as Cabagnot's halfcourt heave just rattled in and out.
With the loss, Petron tied Ginebra at 7-1, making their Christmas Day showdown a virtual battle for top spot at the end of the year. Rain or Shine improved to 5-3 and will face Barako Bull on the 27th. – with reports from Levi Verora/Rappler.com