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Racela, Rice agree Painters played more aggressively to force KO game

Glen Rice Jr. and Nash Racela of TNT KaTropa | Composite Image/PBA Photos

MANILA, Philippines — Both coach Nash Racela and TNT import Glen Rice Jr. are well aware of their team’s shortcomings against Rain or Shine in their PBA Governors' Cup quarterfinal duel on Wednesday night.

“Rain or Shine was just more aggressive … That’s the kind of energy that you want to display for 48 minutes and I think today, we just did it in the end,” the mentor said.

“It’s gonna be hard for the team if we play like that only for a quarter or half a quarter,” chimed in Rice.

TNT mounted a furious rally in the fourth period, looking to dig themselves out of a 20-point rut. Kelly Williams and Jayson Castro combined for 15 points in the final frame to cut the deficit down to just four in lemon time.

But Rain or Shine proved they just wanted the victory more during the first quarterfinals affair at MOA Arena, forcing a do-or-die on Friday night.

TNT is the second team team under the MVP group umbrella that us unable to make the most out of their twice-to-beat advantage. The Meralco Bolts, seeded as the top dogs of this conference, are set to play a rubber match against the eighth-seeded Blackwater Elite in Thursday night’s skirmish at the Big Dome.

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But as far as indications are concerned, KaTropa can actually keep it close against the Elasto Painters. Heck, they’ve been here before, while their foes have not.

Racela though is treading on thin line, as he is also wary of letting that notion get into their heads.

“We can’t really rely on past victories,” he said. “What’s important is how we can recover in the next hours. Hopefully, we can come out better.”

“No pressure,” Rice added. “We’re still in the same position that we were in. We gotta win one game. I think we’re fine.”

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