MANILA, Philippines (UPDATE) – Talk N’ Text displayed its championship form by outmaneuvering B-Meg Derby Ace, 92-82, to push their PBA title series to Game 7.
The Texters finally solved its scoring woes by drawing contributions from its locals in Game 6 allowing them to beat the Llamados in front of more than 20,000 spectators at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Despite his ankle problems, Jason Castro carried the Texters’ fight down the stretch to finish with a total of 25 points on 10 of 17 shooting from the field.
|TNT's Larry Fonacier (12) foils the drive of B-meg's James Yap (8).
TNT won the game, 92-82, to force a game 7 for the PBA
championship. Photo by Marc John Villanueva for ABS-CBNnews.
“’Yun lang ang hinihingi namin, manalo kami dito sa Game 6,” said Castro, Talk N’ Text’s prized point guard.
“The Blur” also dished out 4 assists to help Talk N’ Text foil B-Meg’s title bid.
With regards to his injury, Castro said he had no choice but to ignore the pain.
“This time 'di ko na iniisip 'yun eh. Basta every time nasa court ako pinupush ko na lang ang sarili ko na maglaro the whole 48 minutes,” he said.
For Talk N’ Text coach Chot Reyes, the real story in Game 6 was their ability to accumulate points.
During their series losses, he said the team shot below 40%.
“The only difference is Games 2, 4 and 6, we shot above 40%... that's been the one telling statistic the whole series. We need to make sure that we shoot well in Game 7,” said Reyes.
The Texters had to overcome a slow start in Game 6 as B-Meg started out with a 14-3 exchange led by Denzel Bowles.
The Llamados later padded the lead to 27-19 at the end of the first period.
B-Meg’s assault, topped by James Yap’s triple in the second quarter, gave the Llamados a 39-25 advantage.
Talk N' Text found its stride when Ryan Reyes and Ranidel de Ocampo started connecting from the three-point area. This chopped the Llamados’ lead to 39-35.
Castro's triple at the buzzer finally pushed the Texters ahead, 50-48, at the half.
The following period saw Talk N' Text locals De Ocampo and Jared Dillinger take turns from beyond the arc, while their import Donnell Harvey dominated the shaded lane.
This hiked the Texters' lead to 65-57 midway the third.
B-Meg’s run capped by Jonas Villanueva's drop shot brought the Llamados within striking distance, 65-61.
They went as close as 67-66 early in the fourth, but Talk N’ Text managed to pull away with successive baskets from Castro and De Ocampo.
But back-to-back shots by Yap and Bowles decimated Talk N' Text's lead to single digit, 70-79.
It was Castro’s offensive output up to the final second which carried the Texters to its 3rd victory in the best-of-7 series.
Both teams are now tied, 3-3, in the race-to-4 affair.
Talk N’ Text 92 - Castro 25, Dillinger 16, De Ocampo 15, Harvey 11, Reyes 11, Fonacier 6, Alapag 4, Williams 2, Peek 2, Gamalinda 0, Carey 0.
B-Meg 82 - Bowles 33, Yap 27, Intal 5, Villanueva 5, De Ocampo 4, Barroca 2, Urbiztondo 2, Devance 2, Simon 2, Acuna 0, Gaco 0, Burtscher 0, Pingris 0, Reavis 0.
Quarters: 19-27, 50-48, 67-63, 92-82