Beermen Elasto Painters shatter Texters, seal semis duel with
Abac Cordero (The Philippine Star) - December 28, 2015 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – Rain or Shine started strong and finished even stronger last night to beat Talk N Text, 104-89, last night and arrange a best-of-seven semifinal showdown with San Miguel Beer in the PBA Philippine Cup at the MOA Arena.

The Elasto Painters led by 11 points in the opening quarter and took a couple of 14-point leads in the second and third periods before finally pulling away in the fourth.

Rain or Shine raced to a 21-point lead with just over two minutes left, 104-83. Talk N Text coach Jong Uichico threw in the towel by pulling out his top guns.

Talk N Text never tasted the lead.

“We finally were able to finish what we were not able to do against NLEX,” said Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao, now looking forward to the series with SMB starting Jan. 5.

The Elasto Painters could have gone to the semis outright but came out flat and lost to NLEX a couple of weeks back.

The fiery coach was slapped a technical foul late in the first quarter, and kept shouting from the bench and disputing calls by the referees even while ahead.

“I was shouting my lungs out because I didn’t want the team to slow down,” said Guiao, fully aware that Talk N Text is a team that’s very hard to beat when out in front.

It’s the first time since 2002 that Guiao won a crucial battle, whether it’s a long series or a knockout match, against Talk N Text.

“It’s a smart team, a strong team, well-coached and it has the talent. We were just conscious of the fact that if leads by ten points you’re not going to beat them,” said Guiao.

The Elasto Painters will enjoy just a couple of days of rest, according to Guiao, and should be back in practice the day after New Year’s day.

In the other semis matchup beginning on Jan. 4, Alaska Milk faces GlobalPort.

Meanwhile, the deadline for Ginebra San Miguel to formally place Sunday’s game against GlobalPort under protest came and went yesterday noon.

No protest was filed on behalf of Ginebra, meaning the league’s most popular team has accepted defeat, and that GlobalPort moves on to the semis.

“It was a gentleman’s act by Ginebra not filing the protest. That’s the spirit of sportsmanship,” said PBA media bureau chief Willie Marcial.

But it doesn’t mean that the referees who worked the game are off the hook.

Commissioner Chito Narvasa has summoned the referees to his office at 2 p.m. today to hear their side and try to determine whether or not there were lapses in officiating.

“Regarding the officiating and to be fair, we have scheduled a hearing for the four referees tomorrow. After that we shall come out with our official action on them,” a PBA statement said.

The referees are Mardy Montoya, Bing Oliva, Edward Aquino and Romell Gruta, who was closest to the action and the final play of the game.

With eight seconds on the clock, GlobalPort inbounded from halfcourt, the ball eventually landing in the hands of Stanley Pringle.

Ginebra’s Sol Mercado and Greg Slaughter pressed Pringle, who took at least five seconds to pass the ball to Keith Jensen just before the buzzer.

Ginebra coach Tim Cone howled in protest, saying the referees should have called a ball-hogging (five-second) violation on the GlobalPort guard.

Ginebra supporters turned to social media, claiming that Pringle was also fouled during the closing seconds, and the Gin Kings could have bought some time.

Videos of the final play also showed Pringle’s right foot very close to the halfcourt line, and that a backing violation on Pringle was a possibility.

The PBA commissioner will discuss the situation with the referees.

After the game, Pringle spoke to reporters. He felt he was fouled by either Slaughter or Solomon.

“It was really close, they were trying to trap. Definitely felt a couple of hands in the arm. But it’s alright,” said Pringle, who scored the game’s final basket.

“The referees reviewed it, and I think they made the right choice. Sometimes in basketball it’s a split decision, and sometimes it can go either way. Can’t blame them if they made the right choice,” he said.

“Breaks of the game,” said GlobalPort coach Pido Jarencio.

Ginebra’s LA Tenorio said the final instruction from Cone was to trap and not foul.

“That’s what we wanted to do – trap and no foul. The referees did not call a foul or a violation. Breaks of the game. I thought there was a five-second violation,” he said.

“I also thought I saw him step on the halfcourt line. Maybe it was backing. But there was no call,” said Tenorio.

There was great anticipation of a protest after the knockout game ended on a controversial note before a stunned crowd of 14,539 at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Ginebra lost in overtime, 84-83, when it had chances to win in regulation, quashing its hopes of making the semis of the Philippine Cup.

The game was tight all throughout, marked by 13 deadlocks and a dozen lead changes.

In the end, hours after the game, Cone also went on Twitter.

“Players played their hearts out. Fans screamed their hearts out. Despite the loss, that makes it a great game. We’ll be back stronger. #NSD (never say die),” he said.

The scores:

Rain or Shine 104 – Almazan 15, Trollano 14, Chan 13, Cruz 11, Norwood 11, Quinahan 11, Ahanmisi 10, Ponferada 8, Belga 6, Tiu 5, Ibanes 0.

Talk N Text 89 – Castro 25, Tautuaa 14, Aban 11, Reyes R. 10, Rosario 10, Seigle 10, Williams 5, Reyes J. 2, Fonacier 1, Rosser 1, Ababou 0, Carey 0, Miranda 0.

Quarterscores: 26-20; 52-44; 84-75; 104-89

The scores:

RAIN OR SHINE 104 – Almazan 15, Trollano 14, Chan 13, Cruz 11, Norwood 11, Quinahan 11, Ahanmisi 10, Ponferada 8, Belga 6, Tiu 5, Ibanes 0.

TNT 89 – Castro 25, Tautuaa 14, Aban 11, Reyes R. 10, Rosario 10, Seigle 10, Williams 5, Reyes J. 2, Fonacier 1, Rosser 1, Ababou 0, Carey 0, Miranda 0.

Quarterscores: 26-20, 52-44, 84-75, 104-89

ACIRC ELASTO PAINTERS GAME GINEBRA GUIAO PHILIPPINE CUP REFEREES REYES J REYES R STRONG TALK N TEXT
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