TNT turns back NLEX to gain solo fourth

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The victory pushed TNT to 6-3 in the 2017 Governors’ Cup, good for solo fourth behind defending champion Ginebra (7-2), Meralco (6-2), and the Road Warriors (7-3).

ANTIPOLO — TNT’s life post Ranidel De Ocampo is off to a good start.

Two days after trading away one of their former pillars, the KaTropa scored a big time 112-107 win over sister team NLEX Wednesday at the Ynares Center here.

The victory pushed TNT to 6-3 in the 2017 Governors’ Cup, good for solo fourth behind defending champion Ginebra (7-2), Meralco (6-2), and the Road Warriors (7-3).

In an absolute slugfest between two MVP teams, the KaTropa’s more balanced offense prevailed in the end as six players scored in double figures.

Import Glen Rice Jr. had a fine all-around outing, leading TNT with 25 points, 15 rebounds, 10 assists, and five blocks. If there’s one knock on his triple-double though, is that his turnovers continue to pile up after he committed nine errors against the Road Warriors.

Kelly Williams led the local crew with 19 points while Troy Rosario added 17 and 12 rebounds.

“That was a hard-fought win. It’s good that we were able to play together today, especially on the defensive end. We struggled a bit offensively but we were able to at least organize ourselves in the fourth, in the end game,” head coach Nash Racela said.

With NLEX looking to turn the tide after Alex Mallari drilled a three to cut the TNT lead to one, 107-106, with 1:26 to go, Jayson Castro responded with a booming triple of his own to restore order in favor of the KaTropa.

It was the Blur’s only make from the outside as he struggled for only 13 points.

Aaron Fuller was the high man for NLEX after finishing with 28 points and 18 rebounds while Mallari added 19 markers.

 

The scores:

TNT 112 – Rice Jr. 25, Williams 19, Rosario 17, Castro 13, Tautuaa 12, Semerad 10, Reyes 8, Pogoy 6, Carey 2, Nuyles 0.

NLEX 107 – Fuller 28, Mallari 19, Fonacier 10, Alas 9, Baguio 7, Lastimosa 7, Al-Hussaini 6, Tiongson 5, Soyud 5, Quinahan 5, Rios 2, Ighalo 2, Taulava 2, J. Villanueva 0.

Quarters: 25-20, 50-46, 83-77, 112-107.

 

Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8

 



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