GLOBALPORT capitalized on a Tropang TNT side that played without an import, scoring a 108-101 victory to gain some steam early in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Friday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Batang Pier enjoyed a sizeable cushion throughout, but still had to overcome a late fightback by the import-less Texters, who are still waiting for a replacement for suspended Ivan Johnson.
Terrence Romeo sustained his sizzling form as the Best Player of the Week fired 33 points in 34 minutes to lead GlobalPort, which was fortunate to have an import replacement at the last minute in Calvin Warner.
The returning import, who took over Brian Williams, bucked jet lag and held the fort with 21 rebounds, 11 points, and two blocks in 35 minutes.
“Iba pa rin yung may import ka,” Batang Pier coach Pido Jarencio said. “Nakahabol ang TNT, pero syempre, yung team natin, hindi naman magpapatalo eh.”
Jasyon Castro played like an import for TNT, going on a virtual one-man rally that saw him score 14 points in a 16-4 run, capped by a right-wing triple that pulled the Texters to within five, 98-93, with a little less than four minutes left after being down by as many as 21 late in the third period.
Castro, the reigning Best Player of the Conference, finished with 25 points, five boards, two assists, two steals, and two blocks in 34 minutes.
Romeo, though, had the last laugh in a virtual duel between two of the best guards in the league as he buried a left-wing triple that doused the Texters’ barrage and put the Batang Pier up, 103-95.
GLOBALPORT 108 – Romeo 33, Pringle 14, Sumang 11, Warner 11, Washington 9, Semerad 8, Yeo 8, Mamaril 6, Jensen 4, Kramer 2, Maierhofer 2, Uyloan 0
TNT 101 – Castro 25, Tautuaa 21, Seigle 16, De Ocampo 10, Fonacier 8, Reyes J. 8, Rosser 6, Carey 3, Ababou 2, Reyes R. 2, Aban 0, Rosario 0
Quarterscores: 19-18, 55-43, 90-71, 108-101