NLEX is the PBA’s comeback kings for the 2019 Governors’ Cup.
The Road Warriors came back from 26 points down to stun defending champion Magnolia Sunday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo, 86-85.
Tied at 80, the Hotshots went up by two with 11 seconds to go after five straight points from Paul Lee.
NLEX looked like a goner after JR Quinahan missed a go-ahead three and a defensive rebound by Hotshots import Romeo Travis.
But then Jericho Cruz played hero for the Road Warriors, forcing a jump ball with Travis that eventually led to a pair of free throws for Kiefer Ravena. The Phenom missed the second but Cruz was there to pick up the ball and put NLEX up, 87-86.
With one second left, Lee missed a long three and NLEX kept first place with an 8-1 record. The Road Warriors also joined Meralco with playoff bonuses in the quaterfinals.
The Hotshots dropped to 5-5 with the loss.
Import Mike Harris scored 22 points for NLEX, including a booming triple to tie things up at 83, answering Paul Lee’s own three the possession before.
Quinahan added 14 points for the Road Warriors while Cruz finished with 13 points to cap his heroic effort for the win.
For Magnolia, it was Lee that paced the offense, dropping 24 points. Ian Sangalang ended up with 19 points for the champs.
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