ELLIOT Tan buried the game-winning jumper with two seconds left against his former team as Jumbo Plastic continued its winning streak with a 70-69 victory over Big Chill on Thursday in the PBA D-League Foundation Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
Tan, who once donned the Big Chill jersey before entering the 2012 PBA Draft, received the inbound pass from Macky Acosta and hoisted a turnaround jumper that out the Linoleum Giants ahead. Alex Nuyles’ desperation three-pointer hit nothing but air.
The Linoleum Giants have won three in a row, improving their win-loss record to 4-5 and tying the Superchargers for ninth place. They remained very much in contention for the six-team playoffs with two more games in their eliminations as they are just a game behind Café France and Cebuana Lhuillier (5-4).
“There is still hope,” said Jumbo Plastic coach Stevenson Tiu. “We are hoping that every game, mananalo pa kami. Hindi na masama kung umabot kami ng lima (wins).”
“Nagkakaroon na kami ng chemistry. Naniniwala na sila sa sistema at sa teammates nila,” Tiu added.
Tan, the last player to be picked in the 2012 PBA Draft by Barangay Ginebra, finished with eight points, five rebounds, and two steals.
Jett Vidal split his two free throws for a 66-65 Jumbo Plastic lead after scoring five straight points. Nuyles scored a tough deuce to reclaim the lead but Vidal converted again, this time on a step-back jumper with 20.7 seconds remaining, 68-67.
Mac Montilla, however, was fouled and went to the line for two free throws with 4.2 seconds to play. He made both and Big Chill grabbed a slim 69-68 advantage.
Aljon Mariano topscored for Jumbo Plastic with 23 points. Vidal had 11 points, Marvin Hayes had 10 points and 12 rebounds, while Jumbo Escueta also had 10 points.
Jumbo Plastic (70) – Mariano 23, Vidal 11, Escueta 10, Hayes 10, Tan 8, Del Rosario 4, Acosta 4, Najorda 0, Ignacio 0, Gomez 0, Dehesa 0.
Big Chill (69) – Nuyles 19, Romeo 13, Bringas 10, Canlas 8, Heruela 5, Santos 5, Montilla 4, Villahermosa 3, Dumapig 2, Holstein 0, Lozada 0.
Quarterscores: 21-16; 36-36; 55-53; 70-69.