PBA: TNT squeezes out tough win vs Blackwater


Posted at Mar 31 2017 06:49 PM | Updated as of Mar 31 2017 07:46 PM

TNT KaTropa improved to 2-1. Photo from the PBA Images /cite>

MANILA – Despite trailing by double digits, TNT managed to hammer out a 92-89 come-from-behind win against a tough Blackwater squad to register a second victory in the PBA Commissioner's Cup on Friday.

The KaTropa struggled on offense in the first 3 quarters before finding its footing in the payoff period to fend off the Elite.

Prized rookie Roger Pogoy showed the way for TNT, scoring a perfect 9-of-9 attempts from the 2-point area to finish with 24 points and 3 assists.

Still adjusting in his PBA debut is their new import, Donte Greene, who chipped in 22 points and 13 rebounds.
After trailing the Elite by 12 points, the KaTropa worked on its defense to close the gap in the final minutes.

"Sinabihan kami ni coach na 'di kami dapat mag-rely lang sa opensa namin. Kelangan naming dumepensa kasi nag-struggle kami sa offense namin," said Pogoy following the game.

Pogoy, Jayson Castro and Larry Fonacier then conspired for a 9-0 run to push the KaTropa to a 92-87 advantage. 

After a pair of free throws by Blackwater import Greg Smith, Nino Canaleta had the chance to send the game into overtime.

But his 3-point attempt failed to sink in, allowing the TNT to walk away with its 2nd win in 3 games.

Blackwater, led by Smith's 22 points, fell to its 4th straight defeat.

"Going to this game, we didn't have [the assurance of a win] yet because obviously we have a new guy in Donte (Green). Even the locals, nagkakapaan pa sila,” said TNT coach Nash Racela.

Green came in to replace NBA veteran Lou Amundson, who had 2 games with the KaTropa.

The scores:

TNT 92 – Pogoy 24, Greene 22, Castro 13, Williams 11, De Ocampo 10, Rosario 4, Fonacier 3, Rosales 3, Reyes 2, Carey 0, Golla 0

BLACKWATER 89 – Smith 22, Pascual 12, Buenafe 12, Sumang 9, Cruz 7, Pinto 7, Canaleta 6, Sena 4, Digregorio 4, Cervantes 4, Miranda 2, Gamalinda 0, Perez 0

Quarterscores: 15-27, 39-41, 63-73, 92-89

(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.)