EASTER came early for Rain or Shine as it pulled off a resurrection against Phoenix, hacking out a 96-94 victory behind Jeff Chan’s heroics to snap its skid in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Wednesday night.
Left for dead after falling into a 17-point hole in the third quarter, the Elasto Painters launched an unbelievable comeback behind Chan, who scored 12 points in the last six minutes, highlighted by the three-point play that gave them the lead for good and got them back on the winning track.
The celebration on the Smart-Araneta Coliseum court quickly subsided by an altercation between Phoenix assistant coach Nic Belasco and E-Painters import Shawn Taggart.
Still, the night belonged to Chan, who finished with 24 points in 25 minutes off the bench as the E-Painters notched a first win in three games and fourth overall in six games, while the Fuel Masters dropped to a 2-4 win-loss card.
“It’s a good comeback,” ROS coach Caloy Garcia said. “I told them if they wanted to get the game, it’s up to them. We just had to cut down the lead. The nice thing is they didn’t give up.”
For a while, though, the Fuel masters looked headed for a lopsided victory as they established as 71-54 lead at one point in the third, and even maintained a double-digit lead in the payoff period.
But that’s when Chan heated up, knocking down two triples that put the E-Painters to within a single-digit deficit. After scoring a leaning jumper that kissed the glass, Chan highlighted his vintage play with the layup off a strong drive, before completing the and-1 play to put ROS up for good.
Taggart chipped in 20 points, 17 boards, five assists, and one block, while Jericho Cruz added 11 points, four boards, two assists, and two steals.
The result spoiled another solid performance from Jameel Mckay who registered 27 points, 18 boards, six assists, two blocks, and one steal with just four minutes of rest.
ROS 96 – Chan 24, Taggart 20, Cruz 11, Almazan 8, Yap 7, Norwood 7, Belga 6, Washington 6, Ahanmisi 5, Tiu 2, Tolomia 0, Ponferada 0, Trollano 0
PHOENIX 94 – McKay 27, Alolino 14, Wright 12, Intal 11, Kramer 8, Borboran 7, Jazul 7, Baguio 6, Miranda 2, Torres 0, J. Wilson 0, Dehesa 0
Quarterscores: 25-25, 42-46, 62-73, 96-94