SANTI Santillan played the role of import for a Rain or Shine side that was missing one as it held off a gritty Terrafirma, 120-118, to start a winning streak in the PBA Governors’ Cup on Thursday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
Rain or Shine vs Terrafirma recap
With import Greg Smith II relegated to a cheerleader for failing to secure a Fiba clearance, Santillan hit the go-ahead short stab off a Rey Nambatac assist to preserve the heroics of Andrei Caracut and Gabe Norwood for the Elasto Painters.
The E-Painters won back-to-back games to improve to 2-4 overall, edging back into the Top 8 that will make the playoffs.
“Naghanda kami with Greg. He had a big role in the game plan. He’s familiar with how Jordan Williams plays. But yun nga nangyari, so the talk in the dugout was everybody just had to make contributions,” RoS coach Yeng Guiao said.
“We feel good about locals, especially if we run the system,” he added. “The guys were determined to win even without Greg.”
Williams and Juami Tiongson steered the Dyip, who tried to come back from a nine-point deficit, but fell short and suffered their fourth loss in six games.
Terrafirma, though, made things interesting down the stretch.
Williams heated up after scoring just three points in the first half, pouring in 14 of his 30 points in the final frame including the Dyip’s last six points, capped by a lefty layup that tied the count at 118 with 24.3 seconds left.
But Santillan came to the rescue, finding himself open to score the game-winning basket with one second remaining off Nambatac after the E-Painters milked the clock dry following a timeout.
Caracut finished with a career-high 25 points built around sixth three-pointers on top of three assists and two boards in 27 minutes, while Santillan added 21 points, six rebounds, three steals, and two assists in 30 minutes.
Gabe Norwood chipped in 18 markers, his highest output in the last three seasons, according to chief statistician Fidel Mangonon III.
ROS 120 – Caracut 25, Santillan 21, Norwood 18, Nambatac 14, Asistio 10, Belga 9, Borboran 8, Ildefonso 6, Yap 4, Ponferrada 3, Demusis 2, Clarito 0, Torres 0
TERRAFIRMA 118 – Williams 30, Tiongson 23, Camson 14, Cabagnot 13, Cahilig 13, Ramos 6, Gomez de Liaño 6, Calvo 5, Gabayni 4, Alolino 3, Daquioag 1
Quaterscores: 33-28, 59-57, 90-87, 120-118