TNT KaTropa finally nailed a first win at the expense of sister team NLEX, banking on clutch hits by RR Pogoy at the finish to pull off an 85-80 decision in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum Wednesday night.
Pogoy drilled in a big trey and two charities inside the last 40 seconds, and the Texters overcame the Road Warriors’ never-say-die stand for their first win after dropping their first two games against the Barangay Ginebra Kings and the Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters.
The Road Warriors eventually lost the match on Bong Galanza’s missed three-pointers in the dying seconds as NLEX stayed winless after three starts in the all-Filipino tourney.
“Both teams played well. Wala naman kaming ginawang iba kung hindi treat it like each game that we play – play hard and never mind the result of the game. All we want is to improve,” said TNT coach Bong Ravena.
He expects to have a deeper bench at his disposal in their next game on the possible return of Troy Rosario and Tony Semerad.
Minus a number of injury-hit players including Jericho Cruz, the Texters banked largely on Pogoy, Don Trollano, Ryan Reyes, Brian Heruela and Yousef Taha to score the win against the NLEX side that lost coach Yeng Guiao midway in the third on technical fouls.
TNT 85 – Pogoy 20, Trollano 15, Reyes 11, Heruela 11, Taha 10, Castro 9, Williams 4, Golla 3, Carey 2, Semerad 0.
NLEX 80 – Erram 19, Galanza 19, Paniamogan 10, Fonacier 8, Porter 6, Ighalo 6, Alas 3, Tiongson 3, Quinahan 3, Magat 3, Soyud 0, Baguio 0, Tallo 0.
Quarterscores: 23-21, 43-41, 69-57, 85-80.