The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters bounced back from their debut loss by scoring a 93-71 upset victory over powerhouse Ginebra Gin Kings in their PBA Commissioner’s Cup game at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena Wednesday, September 28.
Elasto Painters import Steve Taylor Jr. sank 20 points to lead the charge as the team combined for 11 three-pointers to grab a 55-28 advantage at the break. They never looked back to claim the victory at the expense of the Gin Kings who had an off night.
Rain or Shine comeback win
The huge comeback win made up for the 90-96 defeat Rain or Shine suffered at the hands of the NLEX Road Warriors Friday, September 23.
NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao gave Taylor, a Toledo Rocket player in the US college ball, a much-needed rest in the second half where he managed to only add one basket.
Guiao’s young reserves wrapped up the match with Santi Santillan hitting 15 markers and Mike Nieto chipping in 10 points.
The veteran coach said it felt good to come back from their recent loss, saying, “Magandang bawi, malaking isda ang nahuli namin (It’s a good comeback, we caught a big fish),” said Guiao as they notched their first win in his return to Rain or Shine.
Guiao said it’s difficult to beat the Gin Kings. “It’s so rare that you caught them on their off night. Ginebra is an All-Star team, especially with the addition of Jamie Malonzo. They’re gonna be scary in the near future,” Guiao added, hoping that their win is for real.
A battle ensued at the start of the first period but the Elasto Painters made a 30-5 rally to open a 27-point lead.
Taylor was unstoppable as he buried three of four triple attempts to highlight his 20-point first-half explosive performance.
He canned 21 points in his PBA debut against the Road Warriors.
Ginebra import Justin Brownlee, however, struggled in the first half, going 1-11 in his shooting but he eventually adjusted to finish with 20 points on top of grabbing 16 rebounds and issuing five assists.
Malonzo, for his part, had 14 points and eight boards.
Magnolia pass Terrafirma
Meanwhile, the Magnolia Hotshots defeated Terrafirma Dyip, 100-92, in another game.
The Chito Victolero-coached Hotshots leaned on 24-year-old Serbian import Nikola Rakocevic who outshined Dyip’s import Lester Prosper with a 45-point, 25-rebound performance.
“He plays both ends of the floor, I mean he contributes to our defensive scheme, he contributes on our offense, very aggressive,” Victolero said of Rakocevic who went 17-of-26 from the floor aside from adding two assists, two steals, and three blocks.
Former USC Trojan in China, Rakocevic, however, gave credit to his teammates and coaches, particularly Victolero, who endured a left Achilles tendon injury during a Sunday workout.
“I’ve got a lot of good players around me, so it makes it a lot easier. I just try to play hard, do everything I can to help this team,” Rakocevic said.
Jio Jalalon chipped in 12 points and seven assists and Ian Sangalang added 10 points, five rebounds, and three assists.
Magnolia veterans Paul Lee and Mark Barroca also put up significant contributions with the former hitting a buzzer-beating triple and the latter’s floater sparked their closing 9-0 run capped by Rakocevic’s four consecutive points.
The Hotshots overcame Calvin Abueva’s absence as he was sidelined by an injured groin. The Dyip bowed to Converge, 110-124, in their first outing.
While the Hotshots entered the winning column, Terrafirma absorbed its second straight loss despite Prosper’s output of 41 points and 19 rebounds.
Juami Tiongson had 19 points including 16 from the second half that saw the Dyip snatching a 92-91 lead after trailing 58-73 through Prosper’s efforts.
The Box Score:
RAIN OR SHINE 93 — Taylor Jr. 21, Santillan 15, Nieto 10, Asistio 9, Caracut 9, Torres 8, Belga 5, Nambatac 5, Ponferrada 4, Ildefonso 3, Norwood 2, Borboran 2, Ponferrada 1, Guinto 0, Clarito 0.
GINEBRA 71 — Brownlee 20, Malonzo 14, Pinto 9, Standhardinger 9, J.Aguilar 8, Pringle 8, Tenorio 2, Thompson 1, Dillinger 0, Pessumal 0, Mariano 0.
Quarters: 25-23, 55-28, 72-49, 93-71.
MAGNOLIA 100 — Rakocevic 45, Jalalon 12, Sangalang 10, Lee 9, Corpuz 9, Barroca 8, Wong 2, Dionisio 2, Dela Rosa 1, Ahanmisi 0, Mendoza 0.
TERRAFIRMA 92 — Prosper 41, Tiongson 19, Munzon 8, Cabagnot 6, Cahilig 4, Gomez de Liano 4, Ramos 4, Camson 3, Gabayni 3, Alolino 0, Calvo 0, Mina 0, Balagasay 0.
Quarters: 29-26, 59-54, 80-71, 100-92.