Coach Olsen Racela put everything in perspective.
“We haven’t really achieved anything yet in the overall context,” said the Petron Blaze coach.
But even he admitted that the import-less Boosters got a welcome dose of a positivity after they stunned Rain or Shine, 87-79, Saturday in a PBA Commissioner Cup out-of-town match in Panabo City, Davao del Norte.
Junemar Fajardo carried the brunt of the post offense for the Boosters, finishing with 20 points and 13 rebounds as Petron pulled the rug from under a Rain or Shine squad parading the league’s tallest import in Bruno Sundov.
“It’s a great character-building win especially in the light of everything that has happened with the team,” said Racela, whose original import, Renaldo Balkman, was banned from the PBA for life for choking teammate Arwind Santos in a loss against Alaska recently. “But I reminded the players that we still have a long way to go. We have a new import coming in and we have to get him adjusted to our system.”
Fajardo, who made 9-of-11 shots from the field, highlighted his heroics with an emphatic putback that gave Petron a 78-69 spread midway through the final quarter.
Marcio Lassiter, who finished with 14 points, also had a hand in that breakaway, draining back-to-back baskets that allowed the Boosters to peel away from a tight 71-69 game.
Meanwhile, Alaska tries to get back on the winning track today, clashing with slumping Globalport with the solo lead at stake for the Aces at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Game time is 4:15 p.m. with Alaska seeking to bounce back from an upset 68-74 loss at the hands of Air21 Friday night.
Talk’N Text and Barangay Ginebra clash at 6:30 p.m. Musong R. Castillo
PETRON 87—Fajardo 20, Lassiter 14, Cabagnot 14, Santos 13, Washington 9, Miranda 6, Lanete 6, Yeo 3, Tubid 2, Peña 0, Faundo 0.
RAIN OR SHINE 79—Sundov 21, Araña 16, Chan 9, Lee 6, Cruz 6, Rodriguez 6, Matias 4, Belga 3, Quiñahan 2, Norwood 2, Tiu 2, Tang 2, Ibañes 0.
Quarters: 21-26, 46-42, 64-61, 87-79