PBA: Troy Rosario, TNT scorch Phoenix to stay unscathed
MANILA, Philippines—MANILA, Philippines—TNT fired from all cylinders to torch Phoenix, 123-118, in a back-and-forth shootout to stay perfect in the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup Wednesday night at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Troy Rosario led a shooting clinic by the KaTropa, who dialed in 18 shots from long distance for a blistering 60 percent clip.
Rosario hit 6-of-9 from downtown for 32 points, just two points shy of matching a career-high. KJ McDaniels, Roger Pogoy and Jayson Castro also got it going from deep, hitting at least three 3-pointers each.
McDaniels, who has been nothing short of spectacular for TNT through three games, matched Rosario’s scoring output with 32 on 3-of-5 shooting from long range.
TNT’s offense was lethal but coach Bong Ravena couldn’t say the same about his team’s performance on the defensive end.
“We cannot play that way defensively. We gave up 118 points and we won’t beat other teams in our coming games by doing that,” Ravena, whose team joined NLEX atop the standings at 3-0, said. “Our defense was not good today. We need to improve.”
“Although Phoenix played well, our locals stepped up. Troy, Jayson (Castro), RR (Pogoy) but we cannot afford to play that kind of defense. Not good.”
Fortunately for the KaTropa, their fiery offense made up for their poor defensive outing. They made eight triples alone in the final frame, five coming in the quarter’s first four minutes.
Rosario, who pumped in 13 points in the fourth period, hit TNT’s last 3-pointer for a 120-110 lead with 2:21 remaining.
Pogoy added 22 points built on four 3-pointers while Castro tallied 20 points, seven rebounds and four assists.
Matthew Wright scored 30 while Eugene Phelps had 29 points and 11 rebounds for the Fuel Masters, who failed to follow up on their win over Ginebra to drop to 1-3.
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