PBA: Fresh from quarantine, TNT takes down Rain or Shine | Inquirer Sports

PBA: Fresh from quarantine, TNT takes down Rain or Shine

/ 08:15 PM July 30, 2021

TNT's Troy Rosario vs Rain or Shine defenders

TNT’s Troy Rosario vs Rain or Shine defenders. PBA IMAGES

MNILA, Philippines–With the league’s COVID-19 protocols getting in the way of its bid to be cohesive, TNT on Friday turned to its defense to take down Rain or Shine, 79-69, and pick up where it left off in the PBA Philippine Cup.

“We’re nowhere near the kind of fluidity we want with the break that we were forced to take and then with Mikey (Williams) just having three practices with us,” said coach Chot Reyes

“We knew we were going to struggle offensively, but we told ourselves, let’s just figure out a way to make stops and win this game with our defense,” he added.

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Indeed, TNT was far from the potent scoring machine it is known for during the contest. Main guns Troy Rosario and Roger Pogoy accounted for just 13 points each, with Glenn Kobhuntin being the only other Tropang Giga to score in double digits.

The Tropang Giga were, however, more assertive on defense.

TNT cornered Rain or Shine—the finest defensive team entering today’s gamest—to 16 turnovers, and then turned those errors into 21 points.

Javee Mocon had 22 points, the only starter to score more than six. Mark Borboran added 12 more for the bench as the 3-2 Painters suffered their second-straight setback after emerging as early leaders of the tournament.

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“We just had to stay the course and focus on the things that are within our control—and the things that are within our control are how hard we practice when we came back from our quarantine,” said Reyes, whose team last saw action in a win over Terrafirma July 17.

Williams, the fourth overall pick of the draft, was lackluster in his first game in a TNT uniform, finishing with just seven points to go with six boards, four steals, and three assists.

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If it’s any consolation, Reyes knows there is plenty of basketball left to play for Mikey and the Tropang Giga. At 2-0, growth should be the least of his worries.

“We all just have to stay patient. And like I said, continue building,” he added.

TNT hopes further fortify its foundation when it plays NorthPort this Sunday.

The Scores

TNT 79 – Rosario 13, Pogoy 13, Khobuntin 10, , Castro 9, M. Williams 7, Heruela 6, Alejandro 6, K. Williams 6, Montalbo 5, Erram 4, Marcelo 0.

Rain or Shine 69 – Mocon 22, Borboran 12, Johnson 7, Caracut 6, Norwood 6, Torres 5, Ponferada 5, Nambatac 4, Wong 2, Belga 0, Santillan 0.

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Quarterscores: 22-19, 43-33, 64-52, 79-69.

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TAGS: PBA Philippine Cup, Rain or Shine Elastopainters, TNT Tropang Giga

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