ANTIPOLO – TNT Katropa clicked on both ends this time as it frustrated Phoenix, 106-98, to grab the early lead in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Saturday night at the Ynares Center.
The Texters continued to flaunt their offensive prowess, but coupled it with a solid defensive effort on the Fuel Masters’ gunners to coast to their second straight victory.
Terrence Romeo led a balanced effort with 21 points, six assists, and five boards, against six turnovers in 27 minutes, while Jayson Castro continued to lead the bench against the Fuel Masters, who failed to follow up their opening win against Blackwater.
“Basing on the first game of Phoenix, they played with a lot of intensity and energy, so that’s something we prepared for,” TNT coach Nash Racela said.
“I think today we were decent especially defensively against Wright and Jeff Chan,” he added as the due combined for just 17 points on 6-of-20 shooting.
The Texters held the Fuel Masters to just 40.9-pecent (36-of-88) shooting overall.
On offense, Castro continued to provide instant scoring as he registered 18 points in 23 minutes, completing his offensive brilliance with seven assists, five rebounds, one steal, and one block.
Jeremy Tyler chipped in 17 points, the last two on a two-handed slam to complete a press break situation and prove to be the exclamation point that put the Texters up, 104-94, with 40 seconds left.
The TNT import finished with 15 rebounds and one assist in 32 minutes.
Jericho Cruz and Troy Rosario were the other two players who scored in twin digits for the Texters, who led by as many as 21 points late in the third quarter
James White led Phoenix with a game-high 32 points, 11 caroms, two blocks, and one steal, without a turnover in 35 minutes that went to waste.
TNT 106 – Romeo 21, Castro 18, Tyler 17, Cruz 14, Rosario 13, Reyes 7, Golla 5, Trollano 5, Pogoy 3, Semerad 2, Carey 1, Saitanan 0, Paredes 0
PHOENIX 98 – White 32, Perkins 12, Wright 12, Jazul 7, Kramer 6, Mendoza 6, Alolino 6, Chan 5, Chua 4, Eriobu 2, Gamboa 2, Wilson 2, Intal 1, Dehesa 1, Hayes 0, Revilla 0
Quarterscores: 26-26, 49-47, 83-67, 106-98