NOT even Jayson Castro’s individual brilliance and TNT KaTropa’s superior hustle stats could lift the team to victory on Friday night, surrendering an 82-79 loss to Rain or Shine in their PBA Philippine Cup openers.
Castro flirted with a triple-double as he amassed a game-high 18 points, 10 assists, and nine boards, on top of two blocks in almost 36 minutes of play.
As a unit, the Texters impressively grabbed 72 rebounds – outrebounding the E-Painters by 18 boards, dished out more assists, 18-13, committed less turnovers, 16-19, and blocked more shots, 8-5.
“Yun nga rin pinagtataka ko, lahat ng stats panalo kami,” Castro said after the game.
The Texters, however, made just 31 of their 101 shots for a paltry 30.7 percent, including just 8-of-38 from downtown, apart from hitting just nine of their 19 free-throw attempts.
“Ang dami naming na-miss,” Castro said. “And siguro, yun nga, outside shots namin. Binibigay na nga ng Rain or Shine eh. Next game siguro, sana pumasok na.”
TNT coach Nash Racela lauded Castro’s individual performance, but not the rest of the team.
“I think if you look at the whole game, Jayson was making the right decisions, taking the shots that he needed to take, making the passes,” Racela said. “It just so happened that his teammates weren’t able to convert. Again, we’ll find ways to have better execution next time.”
Coupled with the same hustle stats, the Texters will definitely give themselves a better chance to win.
“Hopefully sa next game, sana yung stats na ganoon, manalo na kami,” Castro ended with a smile.