PBA: NLEX pulls away to clobber Blackwater
MANILA, Philippines–NLEX used a strong finishing kick to thrash Blackwater on Wednesday, 124-102, and get its PBA Governors’ Cup campaign on a high note.
The Road Warriors outscored the Bossing 40-21 in the final frame, seemingly unfazed by the uncertainty that hovered over the club the night before.
Jonathon Simmons, the NBA veteran whose stint with NLEX hung in the balance the night before the contest at Smart Araneta Coliseum, delivered 32 points that went with nine rebounds and seven assists.
Kevin Alas, meanwhile, chipped in an all-around effort of 31 points, eight rebounds, and four assists in the effort that upended a Blackwater side finally playing at full strength.
“There were a lot of uncertainties yesterday, but us players have to deal with what’s in front of us,” said Alas, the crafty playmaker, who had 19 in the payoff frame alone.
Shawn Glover led the way for Blackwater with 26 points, while three more locals added twin-digit scores—among them the returning Baser Amer and Yousef Taha.
Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser finished with 21 points, Tony Semerad 15, while Matt Nieto 12 in the outing that Alas said was a testament to the team finally adapting to the system brought by coach Frankie Lim, the veteran mentor who took over Yeng Guiao during the second tournament.
NLEX hopes to snare a second victory against NorthPort this Saturday at Ynares Center in Antipolo City.
Blackwater, meanwhile, looks to avoid a 0-2 rut when it plays Phoenix this Friday, also at the hilltop venue.