RAIN or Shine unleashed its full offensive might in a second-quarter attack to smash Barako Bull, 103-91, and grab a share of second place in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Friday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Balik-import Wayne Chism presided over the game's most decisive run, scoring 20 of his game-high 32 points in the first half when the Elasto Painters turned a three-point lead into a 49-31 bubble on the strength of a 19-4 bomb.
Barako Bull managed to cut the lead to 69-77 on a basket by Carlo Lastimosa early in the fourth period, but Jeff Chan and Tyrone Tang joined hands in a 16-6 counter-attack that finished off the Energy.
Chism finished the game with seven three-pointers as he outduelled Barako Bull counterpart Solomon Alabi, who finished with 23 points and 13 rebounds but struggled to keep up with Rain or Shine's run-and-gun offense.
“What happened was we made our threes, and that really gave us a big advantage, plus all throughout the game, Wayne was quicker than their (Energy) import so we want the game to be fast and take away their size advantage by not settling at halfcourt,” said Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao.
Rain or Shine has now won its last three games to inch closer to a playoff berth while keeping alive its bid for a top two spot which carries a twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals.
Rain or Shine has also moved to joint second place with idle Talk ‘N Text on 5-2 records, just half a game behind league-leader Meralco Bolts’ 5-1 card.
The loss dropped Barako Bull to 4-3 and into a four-way logjam for third to sixth places with defending champion Purefoods Star Hotshots, Barangay Ginebra Kings and GlobalPort Batang Pier.
Paul Lee returned from a one-game injury absence to contribute 16 points, six rebounds, six assists and two steals for the Elasto Painters, who also got 12 and six boards from JR Quinahan and 11 points from Jeff Chan.
JC Intal led all locals for Barako Bull with 19 points.
Rain or Shine 103 - Chism 32, Lee 16, Quinahan 12, Chan 11, Norwood 7, Cruz 7, Tang 6, Almazan 4, Uyloan 3, Belga 3, Arana 2, Ibanes 0, Teng 0.
Barako 91 - Alabi 23, Intal 19, Lanete 14, Marcelo 11, Mercado 9, Lastimosa 6, Garcia 4, Matias 3, Pascual 2, Chua 0, Hubalde 0, Salva 0, Paredes 0, Sorongon 0.
Quarterscores: 30-27, 53-40, 77-62, 103-91