TnT rallies back to pip NLEX in OT
TnT labored its way to a third straight win, overcoming NLEX, 126-121, in overtime Friday in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at Mall of Asia Arena.
Jayson Castro led the second-half charge for KaTropa, who trailed by as much as 29 points after the Road Warriors’ record-setting performance in the first two quarters.
The Road Warriors’ 76 points in the first half are the most this conference but that was for naught as the the KaTropa unleashed a 73-45 blast in the next three periods.
After allowing NLEX get into rhythm early, TnT head coach Nash Racela said the players had the initiative to turn things around defensively.
NLEX shot a preposterous 60 percent clip in the first half but TnT’s tighter defense held down the Road Warriors to a 36.17 shooting percentage in the latter periods.
“It was the players who suggested things and it started working out in the second half,” said Racela. “I think in the first half, NLEX was really shooting the ball comfortably, and the players were really taking very open shots that are not acceptable.”
“It was the players who talked before I entered the dugout, they were already talking with each other and they were trying to find ways to rally back.”
TnT was eventually able to dictate the tempo in the overtime period going on an early 7-0 run with Roger Pogoy hitting a triple from the right wing to give the KaTropa a 120-113 lead.
The KaTropa had four players score at least 20 points but it was Jayson Castro who shone the brightest as he put up a 32-point, 11-assist line.
Donte Greene had a 26-point, 16-rebound double-double while Ranidel had his own with 22 points and 11 rebounds.
Pogoy had 20 points to contribute to TnT’s offense.
Wayne Chism led NLEX with 35 points and 21 rebounds.