NLEX started with foreigner Jonathon Simmons and went on to beat Blackwater 124-102 in their PBA Governors’ Cup premiere on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Simmons had a quiet but efficient 32-point start for the Road Warriors, scoring nine rebounds
and seven services after being granted the opportunity to participate in the PBA at the last minute by his old team in China’s CBA.
He went to bed early last night and he did not want to worry about it, NLEX Coach Frankie Lim remarked, dismissing the uncertainties surrounding Simmons’ predicament. However, he was confident in his ability to play the game.
Even so, it took a fourth-quarter outburst by guard Kevin Alas to send the hard-fighting Bossing out for good.
The NLEX captain of the team led the Road Warriors’ late surge with 19 of his career-high 31 scores.
In addition, Kevin Alas’ 19 fourth-quarter touchdowns represented a good score to it.
Alas’ 19 fourth-quarter touchdowns have also been rather impressive in the game.
For the Road Warriors, rookie Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser contributed 21 points, five rebounds, and three assists.
At the six-minute midway of the fourth quarter, NLEX led 98-93 when Alas went on a 19-7 burst that allowed the Road Warriors to pull away for good.
The rookie Shawn Glover led Blackwater with 26 points, five rebounds, and seven services, including the nine points in the third quarter to give the squad a 70-66 leading points.
However, a tremendous finishing kick by Kevin Alas, Simmons, and Rosser enabled NLEX to take an 84-81 score advantage into the final stanza.
NLEX 124 – Simmons 32, Alas 31, Ganuelas-Rosser 21, Semerad 15, Trollano 3, Anthony 2, Miranda 0, Nieto 12, Gabo, Pascual 3.
Blackwater 102 – Glover 26, Ular 14, Amer 13, Taha 13, Suerte 9, Ilagan 8, McCarthy 5, Banal 4, Casio 3, Sena 3, Hill 0, DiGregorio 0, Escoto 2, Torralba 2.