MANILA, Philippines – Rain or Shine kept their Philippine Cup record clean Saturday after an 85-72 win over Meralco for a third consecutive PBA Philippine Cup victory at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
The Painters bounced back from a tentative run with the robust Belgian Beau and then turned to a balanced score led by Javee Mocon the rest of the way to defeat a Bolts team that had just won back-to-back.
“Our expectations were like any other team: extremely high. It really came down to the preparation and the commitment that the players had in that preparation, ”said coach Chris Gavina.
“As the great Bobby Knight said, the most prepared teams are the hardest working teams. That matches who we are, “he added.
Mocon led the way with 18 points, while Belga posted a double-double of 17 and 10 rebounds to send Meralco to his first loss of the tournament.
Out-rebounded, Rain or Shined resorted to their annoying defense to corner Meralco on 21 errors that the Painters converted into 23 points.
Saturday night’s fight was also the third time Rain or Shine held a team to shoot below 40%.
“I am very grateful that our best players – Beau, Gabe (Norwood) Javee, Rey (Nambatac) – set the standard from day one. I’ve said it before, I could be repeating myself again about when your best players are your hardest workers, your culture is established organically, ”Gavina said.
“I guess we are just buying our chemistry, the culture that we are building,” said Belga. “Everybody likes it. I guess that’s the secret: we all like it. “
Meralco drew 13 points from Chris Newsome and 10 from Raymond Almazan, but only four from Mac Belo, who recently had a career game against NorthPort.
Rain or Shine seeks victory number four against Alaska this Wednesday, followed by Meralco’s bid for a rebound victory against a limping Phoenix Super LPG.
Rain or sun 85 – Mocon 18, Belga 17, Torres 11, Nambatac 11, Wong 8, Borboran 7, Caracut 6, Norwood 5, Ponferada 2, Guinto 0, Tolentino 0, Santillán 0.
Meralco 72 – Newsome 13, Almazan 10, Hodge 9, Hugnatan 9, Pinto 8, Quinto 7, Belo 4, Black 4, Maliksi 3, Cañete 2, Jose 2, Jackson 1, Caram 0, Pasaol 0.
Quarterly Scores: 13-18, 42-35, 68-55, 85-72
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