ANTIPOLO - Talk ‘N Text made five of six free throws inside the final minute to survive Alaska’s late-game fightback, 104-103, in the PBA Governors Cup on Monday night at the Ynares Center.
With Talk 'N Text up by four points, guard JV Casio Alaska a chance to steal the game when he knocked down a corner three-pointer over two defenders before taking the ball from the hands of Ranidel de Ocampo during an inbound play - all in a span of 5.5 seconds.
Alaska import Romeo Travis chose to attack Talk ‘N Text’s defense in the final 4.5 seconds but his bank shot went short, allowing the Tropang Texters to escape with their second victory in three starts.
“It could have been anybody’s game talaga. They shot a great three-point shot and then we turned the ball over,” said Talk ‘N Text coach Jong Uichico, who is just three weeks removed from steering his team to the Commissioner’s Cup title.
“But we needed some won games so swerte rin. We played pretty good defense against them, knowing they have great shooters.”
The loss ended the Aces’ run of three victories to start the conference as they dropped to a share of second spot with GlobalPort - just behind Barako Bull which now sits alone at the top with its 3-0 record.
De Ocampo, who missed the Tropang Texters’ first two games due to a swollen knee, made a triumphant return to the team’s roster, scattering six of 13 points in the last quarter.
American import Steffphon Pettigrew led the Tropang Texters with 27 points and 16 boards, while rookie Matt Ganuelas-Rosser added 17.
Travis led the Aces with 26 points and 10 boards, but missed his last three baskets inside the last 60 seconds that proved costly in the end.
Talk N Text 104 - Pettigrew 27, Rosser 17, De Ocampo 13, Fonacier 12, Daghles 9, Williams 7, Washington 6, Carey 5, Miller 3, Seigle 3, Labagala 2.
Alaska 103 - Travis 26, Casio 21, Baguio 13, Banchero 11, Dela Rosa 9, Manuel 6, Eximiniano 6, Abueva 5, Hontiveros 2, Menk 2, Jazul 2, Thoss 0, Dela Cruz 0.
Quarterscores: 24-31; 53-49; 77-78; 104-103