by Jonas Terrado
Game Today (Ynares Center, Antipolo City)
7 p.m. – San Miguel vs Alaska
(San Miguel leads series 2-0)
Rain or Shine delivered a big finishing kick in the final two minutes to stun Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, 109-100, and tie their best-of-five PBA Commissioner’s Cup semifinal series at 1-1 last night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Gabe Norwood’s baseline jumper put the Elasto Painters in front for good before James Yap’s three from way out virtually assured the outcome that not only forced a split of the first two games but also ending Ginebra’s streak of eight consecutive victories after a 1-5 start in the eliminations.
Import Reggie Johnson had 25 points and 20 rebounds, Yap scored 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting, Norwood and Chris Tiu scored 12 and 11 and Raymond Almazan bounced back from a disappearing act in Sunday’s 102-89 loss with 10 points and eight rebounds.
The Elasto Painters’ won on the day they offered to send the whole team to next month’s Indonesia Asian Games in lieu of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas’ dilemma on which players the country will represent in the quadrennial meet.
But for now, Rain or Shine’s focus is to repeat over Ginebra in the third game set Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Norwood’s jumper gave Rain or Shine a 101-100 lead with 2:23 remaining before Johnson and Yap hit back-to-back threes to extend the margin to six.
RAIN OR SHINE 109 – Johnson 25, Yap 18, Norwood 12, Tiu 11, Almazan 10, Borboran 9, Daquioag 9, Nambatac 6, Belga 5, Ahanmisi 4, Ponferada 0, Washington 0.
GINEBRA 100 – Brownlee 29, Slaughter 20, Tenorio 17, Thompson 14, Chan 8, Devance 5, Caguioa 4, Ferrer 3, Cruz 0, Mercado 0.
Quarters: 26-36; 57-57; 87-87; 109-100.
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