TERRENCE Romeo put on his best Houdini impersonation to lead GlobalPort in an escape act against Mahindra with a 118-116 decision in overtime in the Smart Bro-PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Batang Pier star knocked down a right-wing three-pointer – his first after 12 misses – that knotted the count and a layup off a crossover that put his team ahead for good, rescuing his team from the jaws of defeat.
Stanely Pringle also shone down the stretch, firing 12 points in the payoff period, the last two on a fadeaway jumper that sent the game into overtime.
In all, the dynamic duo flirted with triple-doubles, with Romeo scattering 29 points, 10 boards, and a career-high eight assists, and Pringle finishing with 29 points, eight boards, and seven assists for the Batang Pier, who registered their sixth victory in nine games.
The tandem did enough to spoil the clutch plays of Aldrech Ramos, Karl Dehesa, and Mike di Gregorio, who almost led the Enforcers to an upset before suffering an eighth loss in 10 games.
“Grabe shooting nila (Mahindra), pero ta the same time, iba rin yung character na pinakita ng team, special mention kay Terrence, Stanley, and Joseph Yeo,” Batang Pier coach Pido Jarencio said. “Ayaw talagang bumitaw.”
Ramos fired a team-high 24 points, while Dehesa added 23 markers, the last five on a trey and two free throws that gave the Enforcers a 111-105 lead that disappeared as quickly as they built it.
The Enforcers still led, 116-113, after a Kyle Pascual free throw, before Romeo retaliated with that three-pointer and layup off a crossover that spelled the difference in a nip-and-tuck affair that saw 15 deadlocks and 13 lead changes.
GLOBALPORT 118 - Pringle 29, Romeo 29, Mamaril 12, Washington 12, Yeo 11, Kramer 10, Semerad 7, Maierhofer 6, Uyloan 2, Pena 0, Sumang 0
MAHINDRA 116 - Ramos 24, Dehesa 23, Digregorio 19, Yee 14, Guinto 11, Pascual 9, Canaleta 6, Laure 5, Pinto 4, Bagatsing 1, Hubalde 0
Quarterscores: 23-22, 44-49, 79-72, 103-103, 118-116