NORTHPORT rallied from the depth of a 19-point deficit to bring down erstwhile unbeaten Meralco, 109-98, and notch its first win in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
Import Jamel Artis and Robert Bolick provided the 1-2 punch for the Batang Pier, who turned the game around behind a solid 34-14 third quarter performance.
Artis finished with a team-high 26 points, while Bolick added 22 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and three steals for the Batang Pier, who snapped a five-game losing skid.
Arwind Santos, Jamie Malonzo, and Jerrick Balanza also stepped up for the Batang Pier, who led by as many as 20 points while dealing the Bolts their first loss in five games.
Santos had a double-double of 16 points and 20 rebounds while Malonzo had 14 markers.
“Kahit papaano, nag-settle na ang team pati ‘yung import. Medyo nagkaroon na ng chemistry,” said NorthPort coach Pido Jarencio.
“Actually, yun 0-5 namin puro heartbreak losses, lalo na yun first three games. Law of averages na din siguro. Hindi naman pwedeng puro talo,” added Jarencio.
Later, Alaska Milk defeated Rain or Shine, 80-74 , in a highly-emotional contest.
The Aces played well in their first game since the announcement of the team’s disbandment at the end of the conference as they improved to 4-2 overall.
Olu Ashaolu finished with 23 points and 17 rebounds and and Maverick Ahanmisi added 24 points, four rebounds and three assists for the Aces.
“There’s a lot of anxiety and a lot of uncertainty. I just told the guys to remain in the moment. Tonight, we’re playing Rain or Shine and we stay in the moment. We passed the test and we just have to continue passing the test,” said Alaska coach Jeff Cariaso in an interview posted at the official PBA website
Henry Walker had a double-double of 25 points and 13 rebounds for Rain or Shine, which dropped to 3-4
NorthPort (109) — –Artis 26, Bolick 22, Santos 16, Malonzo 14, Balanza 12, Rike 10, Sumang 9, Taha 0, Ferrer 0.
Meralco (98) — Bishop 34, Banchero 23, Maliksi 14, Newsome 7, Pasaol 6, Hodge 4, Quinto 3, Almazan 3, Hugnatan 2, Belo 0.
Quarterscores:18-32, 47-50, 81-64, 109-98.
Alaska (80) — Ashaolu 23, Ahanmisi 14, Tratter 11, Herndon 9, Teng 7, DiGregorio 7, Faundo 3, Adamos 2, Bulanadi 2, Racal 2, Tolomia 0.
Rain or Shine (74) — Walker 25, Nieto 13, Caracut 8, Mocon 6, Belga 5, Borboran 5, Santillan 4, Torres 3, Asistio 3, Jackson 1, Ponferada 1, Tolentino 0, Guinto 0, Norwood 0.
Quarterscores; 26-16, 39-39, 60-60, 80-74.