TNT destroys Ginebra; ROS scores | Inquirer Sports

TNT destroys Ginebra; ROS scores

/ 04:01 AM September 13, 2021

Rey Nambatac puts up the game-winning shot against heavy San Miguel Beer pressure to lift the Painters. —PBA IMAGES

Chot Reyes wanted TNT to be better than it was when it last played a heavyweight in the PBA Philippine Cup eliminations. Surely, an 88-67 bamboozling of defending champion Barangay Ginebra on Saturday—which allowed the Tropang Giga to stay on top of the heap and put the Gin Kings in a precarious elimination round situation—ticked that box for the mercurial coach.

“[W]e came into this game wanting to make sure that we exerted a better effort—that we made better decisions and we executed better. I think we were able to achieve [all] that [tonight],” he said after TNT rose to 8-1 at Don Honorio Ventura State University in Bacolor, Pampanga.

The Tropang Giga, who led by as large as 24 against the Gin Kings, saw a six-game streak come to a halt last week with an 83-67 loss to San Miguel Beer.

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Nambatac saves day

Meanwhile, operating in the background all game long, Rey Nambatac hit a tough runner over three defenders to lift Rain or Shine past San Miguel Beer, 95-93, in the earlier game, that snapped the Beermen’s two-game winning streak.

The crafty guard finished with nine points, frustrating their streaking foes, who were in control for most of the contest as the Elasto Painters climbed to 6-4 overall.

San Miguel, the all-Filipino dynasty of the last decade, tumbled to their third loss in eight matches.

“I already designed a handoff for him. But Rey’s playmaking? That’s on him. He’s the one who was able to go with his instincts and make that game-winning basket for us,” said coach Chris Gavina, whose side inched closer to snaring a playoff bonus.

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Nambatac capped a gutsy fightback spurred by rookie Santi Santillan, who finished with a game-high 21 points, just two days after a breakthrough performance against hard-fighting Magnolia.

Mikey Williams starred once again for the Tropang Giga, tallying 27 points with old hands Jayson Castro, Troy Rosario and Roger Pogoy all finishing with 13 or more.

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The Tropang Giga’s victory put the Gin Kings’ title-retention bid in a precarious situation. The crowd darlings sank to a 3-5 slate and outside the Top 8. INQ

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TAGS: GINEBRA, PBA

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