PBA: Phoenix survives Rain or Shine's furious fightback

Dennis Gasgonia, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 18 2023 09:42 PM

Jonathan Williams led Phoenix to its second win. PBA Images
Jonathan Williams led Phoenix to its second win. PBA Images

Phoenix squandered a 20-point deficit before salvaging a 99-98 win over Rain or Shine on Saturday in the PBA Commissioner's Cup at the Ynares Center in Antipolo.

The Fuel Masters had to survive the Elasto Painters' repeated runs before squeezing out their second victory in three games.
Jonathan Williams fired 28 points to go with his 18 rebounds and seven assists. Jason Perkins added 14 points while Tyler Tio and Sean Maganti had 13 and 9 markers respectively.

Coach Jamike Jarin gave credit to his import Williams.

"I'm very fortunate to be coaching him, he's not just a great player but a great person inside and out," said the Phoenix coach.

But the import deflected the credit.

"The game is not about me, but the entire team. Today we fought hard, played a bunch of young guys but we came together when needed the most. It's not about me," said Williams.

The Fuel Masters led by as much as 20 points midway through the second quarter, but the Elasto Painters roared their way back and whittled their deficit down to 51-49 going to the third period.

In the fourth period, Jason Perkin's trey started a blistering 13-0 run that pushed Phoenix ahead by 12 points, 90-78. Rey Nambatac then conspired with Jonard Clarito and Leo Santillan and had Rain or Shine threatening by 99-98 with 33 seconds to go.

But the Fuel Masters' defense managed to hold up as time ran out for the Elasto Painters.

Rain or Shine fell to its third straight defeat.