PBA: Rain or Shine goes 3-0, beats Meralco
MANILA, Philippines–Rain or Shine on Saturday kept clean its record in the Philippine Cup after an 85-72 triumph over Meralco for a third straight victory in the PBA Philippine Cup at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
The Painters battled back from a tentative period using the rugged Beau Belga and then turned to a balanced scoring spearheaded by Javee Mocon the rest of the way to take down a Bolts side fresh from back-to-back wins.
“Our expectations were just like any other team’s—extremely high. It just really came down to preparation and the commitment that the players had in that preparation,” said coach Chris Gavina.
“As the great Bobby Knight said, the most prepared teams are the hardest-working teams. That coincides with who we are,” he added.
Mocon led the way with 18 points, while Belga posted a double-double of 17 and 10 rebounds to send Meralco to its first loss of the tournament.
Outrebounded, Rain or Shined turned to its pesky defense to corner Meralco to 21 errors which the Painters converted to 23 points.
Saturday night’s stand was also the third time Rain or Shine held a team to shoot under 40% percent.
“I’m really grateful that our best players—Beau, Gabe (Norwood) Javee, Rey (Nambatac)—they set the standard from day one. I’ve said it before, I might be repeating myself again about when your best players are your hardest workers, your culture gets set organically,” said Gavina.
“I guess it’s just us buying in on our chemistry, the culture that we’re building,” said Belga. “Everybody’s into it. I guess that’s the secret: We’re all into it.”
Meralco drew 13 points from Chris Newsome and 10 from Raymond Almazan, but just four from Mac Belo who just recently had a career game against NorthPort.
Rain or Shine shoots for win number four against Alaska this Wednesday, followed by Meralco’s bid for a rebound win against a limping Phoenix Super LPG.
Rain or Shine 85 – Mocon 18, Belga 17, Torres 11, Nambatac 11, Wong 8, Borboran 7, Caracut 6, Norwood 5, Ponferada 2, Guinto 0, Tolentino 0, Santillan 0.
Meralco 72 – Newsome 13, Almazan 10, Hodge 9, Hugnatan 9, Pinto 8, Quinto 7, Belo 4, Black 4, Maliksi 3, Canete 2, Jose 2, Jackson 1, Caram 0, Pasaol 0.
Quarter scores: 13-18, 42-35, 68-55, 85-72
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