by Waylon Galvez
Manila, Philippines – After two defeats, Rain or Shine finally found a way to win – and win big.
The Elasto Painters stepped on the gas as they raced to a masterful 119-97 win over the Globalport Batang Pier for their first win in the PBA PLDT Home Tel-Pad Governors’ Cup yesterday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Rain or Shine’s reinforcement, former Best Import winner Arizona Reid, led a balanced attack as he collected 30 points with 13 rebounds, while Jeff Chan added 19 points and Paul Lee came off the bench to score 17.
Averaging just 94 points per game this conference that resulted to back-to-back defeats, the Painters’ scoring output was the most by any ballclub this conference and second most this season after Talk ’N Text’s 121-117 overtime win against Alaska in the Philippine Cup.
The 6-foot-4 Reid, who reigned in this same conference four years ago, scored 13 points in a big third quarter run by Rain or Shine, which outscored Globalport 39-25 and turned a 50-45 advantage to a comfortable 89-70 lead entering the final frame.
The closest Globalport got after that was when it trimmed the deficit to 95-82 on a three-pointer by rookie Terrence Romeo, who led his team with 22 points in his second game.
Rain or Shine converted 50 percent of its attempts from the field (42-of-84), while limiting Globalport to 30-of-80 shots (41.3%). Batang Pier import Leroy Hickerson was held to 20 points on 8-of-16 shooting.
The Painters also controlled the boards, 52-49.
“We just shot the ball well,” said Rain or Shine mentor Yeng Guiao, whose team dropped the first two games – against Air21 (103-96) and San Miguel Beer (97-92). “It’s been a long time since we shot the ball well.
“We knew Globalport will play a running game, but our attitude is just to keep running with them. We’ll stretch our bench, just to keep them (starters) fresh. That worked for us. It’s a balanced offense for us, not just the import but the other guys.
“Defensively, we’re able to defend their import well, we know what he can do,” added Guiao, who said their goal is to make the playoffs just like they did in the first two conferences of the PBA.
The win put Rain or Shine in a three-way tie with Globalport and Barako Bull all with 1-2 cards.
Meanwhile, the elimination round of the season-ending conference continues as Alaska – under new mentor Alex Compton – takes on Talk ’N Text at 8 p.m. at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Tropang Texters are coming off a 105-99 win over the Meralco Bolts a week ago, but they will be facing the Aces that decided to take a fresh start by firing their coach Luigi Trillo.
Alaska is nursing a 95-91 setback against Globalport last Friday.
RAIN OR SHINE 119 – Reid 30, Chan 19, Lee 17, Rodriguez 13, Arana 11, Almazan 7, Norwood 6, Tang 5, Uyloan 4, Teng 3, Belga 2, Tiu 2, Cruz 0, Nuyles 0, Ibanes 0.
GLOBALPORT 97 – Romeo 22, Cabagnot 21, Hickerson 20, Washington 13, Menk 8, Macapagal 6, Garcia 5, Salva 2, Matias 0, Taha 0, Ponferada 0, Salvador 0, Sharma 0.
Quarters: 25-25, 50-45, 89-70, 119-97.
SAN MIGUEL BEER 92 – Williams 29, Fajardo 18, Ross 15, Santos 13, Tubid 6, Lutz 6, Mercado 3, Kramer 2, Maierhofer 0, Duncil 0, Lassiter 0, Chua 0.
SAN MIG SUPER COFFEE 90 – Blakely 31, Barroca 13, Pingris 12, Yap 11, Devance 8, Simon 8, Reavis 5, Mallari 2, Maliksi 0, Sangalang 0, Melton 0.
Quarterscores: 19-21, 40-44, 60-67, 92-90