PBA semis: Hot shooting Painters torch Hotshots for 2-0 series lead
MANILA, Philippines—Rain or Shine big man Norbert Torres kept shaking his head in disbelief after making his third triple in the first half.
Torres went 4-of-4 from long range all in the first two quarters as the Elasto Painters made it rain in a methodical beatdown of the Magnolia Hotshots, 93-80, to go up 2-0 in their 2019 PBA Philippine Cup semifinals series Sunday night at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“I think we just started the game on fire. Norbert came out and hit his shots and I think that threw them off,” said ROS head coach Caloy Garcia, whose squad go for a commanding 3-0 lead on Tuesday still at the Big Dome before the league goes on a five-day Holy Week break.
The 6-foot-6 Torres, who has seemed to have find a home after bouncing around the league in his first four seasons in the league, set the tone for the Painters with all of his 16 points coming in the first half. He also had five rebounds and a block in less than 15 minutes of play.
The Painters were deadly on the offensive end going 16-of-37 from downtown and they also caused problems for the Hotshots with their defense.
“Our defense was also key today. We were able to slow down their guards. For us to win this series, we have to be a consistent defensive team,” Garcia said.
Rain or Shine shut down Magnolia’s high octane guards Jio Jalalon and Mark Barroca, who combined for just four points on on 2-of-13 from the field. They also contained Paul Lee, who had 12 points on 4-of-9 shooting with three turnovers.
Ed Daquioag led Rain or Shine, which did not have the services of key players Raymond Almazan and Maverick Ahanmisi due to injuries, with a game-high 19 points while Rey Nambatac and Gabe Norwood added 12 and 10 points, respectively.
Daquioag had nine in the third quarter where the Elasto Painters, whose lead ballooned to 25 in the final frame, just kept pouring it on.
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