1-0 for Talk ‘N Text-A A +A
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
MANILA — Talk ‘N Text kept its composure in the crucial stretch to escape with an 87-81 win over Rain or Shine on Wednesday and take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven championship series of the 38th PBA Philippine Cup before a crowd of more than 14,000 at the Araneta Coliseum.
Jared Dillinger, Larry Fonacier, Jimmy Alapag and Jason Castro displayed strong hearts all throughout to quash the Elasto Painters’ relentless stand. They were leading by as much as 18 points early but saw their advantage reduced to only three points, 79-76, just 3:15 remaining.
“I was very happy the way we did, the way we played defense. We had lots of problems when they used Gabe Norwood as a power forward. We will try to counter coach Yeng Guiao’s adjustments next time. We have to win Game 2 because we know they can bounce back. We are playing against Rain or Shine and they have a great coach, they have great players,” said TNT coach Norman Black.
The Tropang Texters, who are looking for their third straight All-Filipino title and their sixth overall, will try to go 2-0 in the second game while Rain or Shine is expected to level the long series on Friday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
The Tropang Texters, using their vast championship experiences, started strong as Dillinger, Kelly Williams and Ranidel de Ocampo surged to an early 15-5 upper hand en route to a 24-15 advantage in the first canto.
Coach Black’s wards played without let-up and held the Elasto Painters scoreless for about four minutes early in the second period to post a big 33-15 lead. Larry Rodriguez broke Rain or Shine’s long silence while Jeff Chan followed suit to close the gap, 19-33.
But the opening jitters seemed too hard to overcome for the Governor’s Cup titlist Elasto Painters and that allowed Talk ‘N Text to stretch the gap to a big 38-21 advantage on Dillinger’s jumper with still 8:25 remaining in the second period.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 10, 2013.