Castro anchors TNT's 29-point comeback against NLEX

Paul Lintag on Apr 07, 2017 07:11 PM
Castro anchors TNT's 29-point comeback against NLEX
The Blur orchestrated a 29-point TNT comeback and the KaTropa kept NLEX winless in the Commissioner's Cup.

It appeared NLEX was on its way to a breakthrough victory after opening up a massive 29-point lead against TNT Friday at the MOA Arena.

The Road Warriors will need to look for their breakthrough win for another day.

TNT completed the biggest comeback of the PBA season after pulling off a 126-121 overtime win over the Road Warriors at the MOA Arena for the 2017 PBA Commissioner's Cup.

The KaTropa needed an incredible second-half effort to steal one against NLEX for their third straight win and a 3-1 record. TNT particularly did the most damage in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Road Warriors, 30-12, to force overtime.

Jayson Castro was at the forefront of the attack, scoring 32 points and dropping 11 assists, the last one to Ranidel De Ocampo near the end of regulation to force an extra five minutes.

After not leading all game long, the KaTropa took control in overtime, scoring the first seven points for a 120-113 count. Rookie RR Pogoy then hit the big shots to hold off a final attempt by NLEX to salvage a victory.

"We were down 29 points and without the mentality of playing defense," head coach Nash Racela said.

"I think the lesson here is that we cannot choose kung kelan kami maglalaro. It has to be a 48-minute game in which we continuously play. It's a big lesson for us but at least we got the win," he added.

Aside from Castro, three other players scored over 20 points for TNT led by import Donte Greene who finished with 26 despite still struggling to shoot from the field, missing 18 of his 27 attempts. He did add 16 rebounds and three dimes.

After scoring only three points in the first half, Ranidel De Ocampo wound up with 22 while Pogoy added 20. Troy Rosario started for the KaTropa and dropped another 16 points.

For NLEX, which has now lost five straight to start the new conference, Wayne Chism led all scorers with 35 points while Kevin Alas added 19.

The Road Warriors actually controlled almost the entire game, dropping 76 points in the first half on the strength of a conference-high 42 points in the first quarter.

NLEX was still comfortably ahead in the third quarter, posting an 89-60 lead before TNT slowly chipped away the deficit and launching an all-out attack in the fourth.


The scores:

TNT 126 - Castro 32, Greene 26, De Ocampo 22, Pogoy 20, Rosario 16, Williams 6, Fonacier 2, Carey 2, Rosales 0, Reyes 0, Tamsi 0.

NLEX 121 - Chism 35, Alas 19, Lastimosa 13, Tiongson 10, Camson 7, Khobuntin 7, Al-Hussaini 7, Anthony 6, Taulava 4, Rios 3, Guinto 3, J. Villanueva 2, Soyud 2, Baracael 2, Lanete 1.

Quarterscores: 22-42, 53-76, 83-101, 113-113, 126-121.


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