PBA: Rain or Shine ousts Barangay Ginebra
ANTIPOLO—Rain or Shine didn’t need to mount a comeback Wednesday night. The Elasto Painters just needed to prevent Barangay Ginebra from coming up with one.
The Elasto Painters scored 41 first-quarter points and kept the Gin Kings at arm’s length the rest of the way for a 106-91 triumph to become the third member of the PBA Philippine Cup’s Final Four cast.
Not wanting a deciding Game 3, the Painters imposed their will right from the opening tip, shooting an astounding 68 percent in the first quarter to win pulling away before a stunned pro-Ginebra crowd at the Ynares Center here.
“In the first game, we got lucky,” coach Yeng Guiao told reporters, referring to the 112-105 overtime victory his Painters secured after overcoming a 17-point deficit early in the fourth quarter on Friday.
“Tonight, we got off to a really good start and took away the momentum and initiative from Ginebra,” he continued. “This is really a good sign for such a young team like ours, being able to close out a series.”
Waiting in the wings for the Painters is Powerade which eliminated No. 1 seed B-Meg last Sunday with another overtime win set up by Gary David’s 37 points.
The two collide in Game 1 of their best-of-seven series on Jan. 4, when the PBA resumes after the Christmas break.
Petron sealed the other half of the semifinal pairing by flexing its defensive muscles in an 80-64 victory over Meralco in the second game.
The Boosters also swept that quarterfinal showdown, with rookie Chris Lutz showing the way with 21 points.
“You can’t take a team like Powerade for granted,” Guiao said of his upcoming matchup against former player, David, the Powerade superstar. “We will prepare very hard for Powerade.”
Rain or Shine used six first quarter triples to jumpstart its offense and seal a second semifinal appearance after its 2009 stint with Jai Lewis in the import-flavored Fiesta Conference.
And when the Kings, the fourth seeds, tried to erase deficits that ballooned to as many as 24 points, the Painters again went to the long court to drain some critical triples that totally took the fight out of Ginebra and the throng that anticipated a Game 2 win.
Jeff Chan had two key triples that quelled the last of numerous Ginebra rallies, and super rookie Paul Lee scored five straight points in a 32-second span that put the game to bed for the Painters, 104-81, in the final 2:03.
RAIN OR SHINE 106—Chan 22, Buenafe 13, Matias 12, Belga 12, Arana 11, Norwood 9, Quinahan 9, Lee 8, Rodriguez 6, Cruz 4, Tang 0.
BARANGAY GINEBRA 91—Cortez 17, Canaleta 13, Intal 12, Caguioa 11, Mamaril 10, Labagala 8, Villanueva 8, W. Wilson 6, Helterbrand 6, Tubid 0.
Quarters: 41-24, 58-37, 78-61, 106-91
PETRON 80—Lutz 21, Santos 18, Yeo 13, Miranda 12, Baclao 6, Reyes 6, Tugade 2, Ildefonso 2, Doruelo 0, Agustin 0, Cabagnot 0.
MERALCO 64—Espinas 20, Cardona 10, Mercado 9, Macapagal 7, Taulava 7, Isip 4, Timberlake 2, Borboran 2, Omolon 2, Ross 1, Ballesteros 0, Lanete 0, Hugnatan 0.
Quarters: 30-17, 46-32, 58-49, 80-64
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