PBA: Jayson Castro lifts TNT past Alaska
MANILA, Philippines—TNT needed a hero and Jayson Castro heeded the call.
Castro scored all of his points in the second half as he willed the Tropang Giga to the 81-77 win over Alaska in the 2021 PBA Governors’ Cup Friday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The win put TNT, which won the 2021 Philippine Cup, at 1-1 while the Aces slipped to 2-2 and their second straight loss.
Castro was crucial in the clutch for TNT as he pulled up for a jumper to cap off a 9-2 run for the 80-75 lead with 1:15 remaining.
— PBA (@pbaconnect) December 17, 2021
TNT head coach Chot Reyes said he expected his team to struggle in the first few games of the conference as they never had enough time to practice as a full team and it was only during their loss to NLEX that they played McKenzie Moore and Gab Banal.
This lack of court-time together forced Reyes to field an all-Filipino lineup in the final five minutes of the fourth.
“I had to go with the guys who already knew what they were doing, even if Mac or Gab was playing well,” said Reyes.
Castro led finished with 20 points with five rebounds, six assists, three steals, and one block for TNT while Glenn Khobuntin added 16 points, on 5-of-7 shooting, off the bench.
Moore had 13 points in his second game of the conference but on a paltry 3-of-12 clip from the field.
Olu Ashaolu had 29 points and 18 rebounds to lead Alaska.