RAIN or Shine endured an early bump before cruising to a 103-88 victory over a sluggish Star to sustain its rise in the PBA Governors’ Cup on Saturday night at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Elasto Painters trailed after close battle in the first period, before banking on a breakaway in the middle quarters to score the surprisingly lopsided result.
It was the fourth straight win and fifth overall in nine games for the streaking Painters, who drew significant contribution from Wendell Mckines and Paul Lee as well as Jeff Chan and Jervy Cruz off the bench.
The Painters also snapped the Hotshots’ two-game winning streak, leaving their victims stuck in ninth spot with a 3-5 record.
“It’s a big win for us…and we’re gaining momentum,” Painters coach Yeng Guiao said. “This opens the door for us for the last slot that has a twice-to-beat advantage.”
The Painters, who are now just outside the Top 4 – spots that have win-once incentives in the quarterfinals, engaged the Hotshots in an early see-saw affair between two contenders with winning streaks on the line.
But it was RoS that pulled away in the second and third quarters where they outscored the Hotshots. 54-38, behind a blistering shooting that saw them end up making 38 of their 78 shots for a solid 48.7 percent.
Mckines typified the accuracy as the undersized American big man tallied 28 points on 11-of-18 shooting, 14 boards, and one steal in 24 minutes.
Chan, fully recovered from a plantar fasciitis injury that hobbled him last conference, added 16 points, including three on a three-pointer that gave the Painters their biggest lead at 92-72 with over seven minutes left in the game.
Marc Pingris was one of the few bright spots offensively for the Hotshots, tallying 25 points as energetic forward made 11 of his 14 shots, along with four boards and four assists in 33 minutes.
But Marqus Blakely was held to just 13 points on just seven attempts, although the do-it-all Star import had 10 boards, three assists, two steals, and one block, against five turnovers in 35 minutes.
ROS 103 – McKines 28, Chan 16, Lee 13, Cruz Jervy 10, Arana 9, Almazan 8, Uyloan 6, Norwood 6, Ibanes 5, Belga 2, Cruz Jericho 0
STAR 88 – Pingris 25, Devance 15, Blakely 13, Barroca 12, Mallari 9, Yap 6, Melton 4, Reavis 3, Simon 1, Taha 0, Pennisi 0
Quarterscores: 22-25, 49-44, 76-63, 103-88