Gutsy rookie Celda saves the day for still fighting Floodbuster
ABS-CBN Sports on May 21, 2017 07:37 PM
IT TAKES GUTS.
Mahindra is not yet done in the 2017 PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
Rookie Reden Celda made sure of that as his floater dropped the Floodbuster’s upset ax on Phoenix, 122-121, in an overtime thriller on Sunday at the MOA Arena.
Celda scored all but two of his team’s six points in the extra period, granting Mahindra the boost it needed for just its third win out of 10 games.
In all, the rookie had a career-high 25 points in 64 percent shooting in what is undoubtedly the best game of his professional career. “Red has turned a corner. He’s probably our most consistent guy right now,” a more than satisfied coach Chris Gavina said.
None was bigger than his short stab along the baseline with 21.6 ticks to go in overtime that proved to be the difference between the two teams.
The Fuel Masters had several openings for their own game-winner, but Matthew Wright, Jameel McKay, and Cyrus Baguio all muffed on their attempts.
Still, Celda would not have had a chance for the game-winner without the heroics of LA Revilla who had 11 of his game-high 26 points in the final frame of regulation. “LA is… wow. He carried us in the last push,” Gavina expressed, talking about his floor leader who also registered a career-best scoring output.
Reinforcement Keith Wright also contributed an 18-point, 21-rebound double-double for Mahindra.
Now at 3-7, the Floodbuster is breathing down the neck of the Fuel Masters for a spot in the top eight. “It’s a good situation to be statistically still in this some way, somehow, considering this kind of up and down season we’ve had,” Gavina expressed.
Six Phoenix players were in double-digits led by import McKay with 18 points to go along with 12 rebounds and seven assists. Unable to stop Celda in the dying moments, however, they dropped to 4-6.
MAHINDRA 122 - Revilla 26, Celda 25, Wright 18, Camson 17, Khobuntin 13, Deutchman 6, Teng 6, Corpuz 4, Nimes 3, Salva 2, Caperal 1, Paniamogan 1, Yee 0, Ballesteros 0.
PHOENIX 121 - McKay 18, Wright 17, Alolino 16, Borboran 15, Jazul 15, W. Wilson 10, Baguio 9, Intal 7, Eriobu 6, Dehesa 4, Kramer 2, Torres 2, Lanete 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 27-30, 58-62, 93-93, 116-116, 122-121.