RAIN or Shine had to work, but got a bit of luck down the stretch too as it held off Phoenix, 109-104, to enhance its playoff bid in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Friday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Elasto Painters were hard-pressed to ward off the Fuel Masters in a see-saw battle, before benefiting from a late goaltending call slapped against Phoenix to escape with hard-earned victory.
Jeff Chan provided a huge spark off the bench, scattering 19 of his game-high 25 points in the final frame to lead the E-Painters, who joined Tropang TNT and Ginebra in fourth spot with a 5-4 win-loss record.
But it was an offensive goaltending call on Phoenix import Kevinn Pinkney that spelled a big difference as the E-Painters kept the lead at 105-104, before making their charities that gave them enough cushion to preserve the result the dropped the Fuel Masters to 3-6.
Pinkney's basket was nullified after a video review as referees ruled that the import touched the net after the shot. Curiously, no call was made prior to the review.
For RoS coach Yeng Guiao, the controversial call was no more than poetic justice.
“That goaltending call was a break that was due to us,” said Guiao, who returned after serving a one-game suspension. “Masyado ng marami tawag na hindi napunta sa amin.”
Chan’s explosion masked another so-so showing from import Mo Charlo, who seemed to defer once again to the locals, wounding up with just 17 points, six boards, and four assists in 33 minutes.
The result spoiled another stellar showing from Willie Wilson, who registered 21 points on 8-of-13 shooting and missed a double-double by one rebound in 36 minutes.
ROS 109 – Chan 25, Charlo 17, Cruz 16, Almazan 10, Quinahan 8, Trollano 6, Belga 5, Norwood 5, Tiu 5, Ponferada 4, Ahanmisi 3, Lee 3, Nimes 2, Ibanes 0
PHOENIX 104 – Wilson 21, Garcia 20, Pinkney 20, Lanete 13, Intal 11, Baracael 8, Brondial 4, Monfort 4, Urbiztondo 3, Pennisi 0
Quarterscores: 27-27, 54-45, 77-76, 109-104