PBA: NLEX tops Rain Or Shine to keep slim playoff hopes alive


Posted at Jun 28 2019 07:00 PM | Updated as of Jun 28 2019 07:41 PM

New acquisition Jericho Cruz has been instrumental in NLEX's 2 victories so far in the 2019 Commissioner's Cup. PBA Media Bureau

NLEX fended off Rain Or Shine for a crucial 100-97 win in the 2019 PBA Commissioner's Cup at Araneta Coliseum on Friday.

Jericho Cruz scored 12 of his 15 points in the second half to keep the Road Warriors' campaign alive.

Cruz also finished with 6 rebounds and 6 assists, as NLEX improved to 2-7 while handing Rain Or Shine's third defeat in 6 games.

Olu Ashaolu added 26 points and 13 rebounds, providing a big lift for the Road Warriors’ struggling bid.

NLEX led by as many as 17 points, but Rain Or Shine made a big comeback late in the game and pulled to within 98-97 following Kris Rosales’ triple in the final 33 seconds.

Fortunately, Poy Erram was able to block Denzel Bowles’ attempt in the final seconds and Ashaolu pegged the final count from the free-throw line.

NLEX’s win ruined Bowles’ 35-point effort.

It was the Road Warriors' first win against the Elasto Painters since 2017.

The scores:

NLEX 100 – Ashaolu 26, Cruz 15, Erram 13, Ighalo 13, Tiongson 8, Soyud 7, Varilla 6, Paniamogan 5, Quinahan 5, Lao 2, Baguio 0, Galanza 0, Paredes 0.

Rain Or Shine 97 – Bowles 35, Rosales 18, Daquioag 13, Mocon 12, Belga 9, Nambatac 7, Norwood 2, Alejandro 1, Ponferada 0, Borboran 0, Torres 0.

Quarters: 23-23; 51-38; 81-64; 100-97.

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