Tan’s game winner lifts Jumbo Plastic past Big Chill as Mariano topscoresBy Celest R. Flores
MANILA, Philippines — After an exchange of baskets in the final minute, Jumbo Plastic got the last laugh with a game-winner Ellion Tan to clip Big Chill 70-69 Thursday in the 2013 PBA D-League Foundation Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
With gunner Jett Vidal highly guarded in the final possession, the Giants turned to Tan to take the winning shot and torch his former team in the league.
Tan cooly made the jumper with 2.1 seconds left to play, leaving Big Chill with the only option of throwing a Hail Mary pass from beyond the half court.
“Broken play na ’yon. First option si Jett Videl then na-deny, tapos si Tan kumuha,” said head coach Steven Tiu, who’s back from a one-game absence.
The Giants continued their uphill climb to the playoffs as they tied with the Superchargers with a 4-5 card after their third straight victory.
“There’s still hope. Siguro momentum din at saka nagkaka-chemistry na kami. Lumalaban na at nakaka-carry over kami ng confidence,” said Tiu.
University of Santo Tomas’ standout Aljon Mariano led the Giants with 23 points and seven rebounds, along with three assists and two blocks.
Alex Nuyles, meanwhile, paced the Superchargers with 19 points including the drop which put them ahead 67-66 with 36.2 ticks left.
Vidal got the two points and the lead back for the Giants after shoving Mac Montilla to create space and nail a stepback jumper.
Montila, though, got fouled in the ensuing play and made two freethrows but that was the last the Superchargers would score.