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PBA: James lifts ROS

Game Today (Mall of Asia Arena)
5 p.m. – Phoenix vs Star

Games Tomorrow (Smart Araneta)
4:30 p.m. – Mahindra vs SMB
6:45 p.m. – Global vs Ginebra

James Yap

James Yap

Only in his third game with his new team, ace shooter James Yap is making it look like he’s been there a long time with Rain or Shine.

Yap, a former two-time MVP, scored 15 points to power ROS to a convincing 107-93 win over Blackwater to take the early lead in the PBA Philippine Cup last night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Obtained in a trade with Star in exchange for Paul Lee, Yap converted 5-of-9 from the field, including 2-of-4 from three-point range while adding five rebounds in 26 minutes of action.

It was a total team effort for the Elasto Painters with eight players collecting seven points or more as center Raymond Almazan finished with double-double 14 points and 16 rebounds, Jewel Ponferada had 13 while Jeff Chan and Don Trollano added 11 points apiece.

The victory improved the win-loss record of ROS to 3-1 as it bounced back from an 81-74 defeat to Governors’ Cup champion Barangay Ginebra San Miguel last Sunday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

Despite the win, ROS mentor Caloy Garcia isn’t that satisfied with the overall performance of the team after committing 27 turnovers – 10 more than what the opposition had and which Blackwater translated to 33 points.

ROS controlled the boards, 50-41.

“The difference is we were moving the ball better (in the second half). I told the players not to rely on individual plays and we have to work on our turnovers. It’s too much (27 TOs), yun lang naman negative namin,” added Garcia as ROS converted 37-of-73 (51%) from the field with 13 triples.

As for Yap, Garcia said he decided to give the onetime University of the East standout more playing time to help him regain his rhythm in time for their game against Star on December 18.

“Today hinabaan ko yung minutes niya. I wanted him to be ready for our game against Star. I wanted him to be ready. He was OK (in this game),” said Garcia.

While he is satisfied with the performance of Yap, Garcia said they have yet to see solid contributions from Jay Washington, another pre-season recruit in a trade with GlobalPort, and consistencies from rookie Mike Tolomia.

As for Blackwater, the defeat was the team’s second straight following a franchise best start of 2-0.

RAIN OR SHINE 107 – Yap 15, Almazan 14, Ponferada 13, Chan 11, Trollano 11, Norwood 9, Ahanmisi 8, Belga 8, Washington 7, Cruz 6, Tolomia 5, Ibanes 0, Matias 0.

BLACKWATER 93 – Aguilar 15, Belo 13, Dela Cruz 12, Sena 12, Buenafe 11, Pascual 8, Gamalinda 7, Pinto 6, Cervantes 4, Miranda 3, Ababou 2, Banal 0, Forrester 0, Perez 0.

Quarters: 16-19, 46-39, 75-59, 107-93.