RAIN or Shine inched closer to a playoff spot after it outlasted Magnolia, 99-96, in overtime to once again seize the top spot in the standings of the PBA Commissioner's Cup on Saturday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Reggie Johnson threw his burly frame in the paint and dominated newcomer Curtis Kelly to lead the Elasto Painters to their sixth win in seven tries, while also snapping the Hotshots' three-game winning run in the process.
Johnson finished the game with 23 points, 18 rebounds, four assists and two blocks, proving to be a perfect fit for the streaking Elasto Painters.
Gabe Norwood and Beau Belga hit crucial threes in the overtime period to respond to a Paul Lee three-pointer, before riding on Chris Tiu's steady hands from the foul line to fend off the Hotshots.
Kelly, who lost the ball in the final play of regulation, had a chance to send the game into second overtime but his attempt from downtown went way off the mark.
"I just have to give it to the players in this game. They came out and played defense. I just asked them to play hard defense because we know that without Ian Sangalang, their guards are gonna be aggressive," said Rain or Shine head coach Caloy Garcia.
"I think we're okay right now but we can still be better," he added.
Raymond Almazan had a fine game to compliment Johnson’s play as he finished with 19 points and nine rebounds, while Norwood also had a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds.
Without Ian Sangalang, who’s set to miss some time a wrist injury, the Elasto Painters lorded over the glass, outrebounding the Hotshots 62-46.
The loss sent Rome dela Rosa’s perfect game from the field to waste as he led the Hotshots with 19 points on 6-6 shooting, though he missed four shots at the foul line.
Kelly’s debut also left a lot to be desired as he finished with 19 points, 15 rebounds while making just three of his 12 attempts from the foul line.
All in all, it was horrific night from the line for the Hotshots as they made just 12 of their 31 attempts from the free throw line.
ROS 99 – Johnson 23, Almazan 19, Norwood 12, Tiu 10, Ahanmisi 9, Belga 7, Yap 5, Torres 5, Daquioag 4, Ponferada 3, Nambatac 2, Onwubere 0
MAGNOLIA 96 – Kelly 19, Dela Rosa 19, Jalalon 13, Lee 10, Ramos 7, Melton 6, Pascual 6, Reavis 4, Herndon 4, Simon 3, Brondial 3, Barroca 2
Quarterscores: 22-18, 46-50, 69-68, 88-88, (OT) 99-96