At the Ynares Center, where they won 101-98 in overtime to start the season, Lastimosa said at the news conference following the game, “I think there was no malice or intent for Rondae na tamaan niya ng bola ‘yun,”. After an F2 violation at 11:18 in the third quarter, Hollis-Jefferson headed to the showers early. He had just smacked Nieto with the ball after making a one-handed dunk, extending their advantage to 17 points, 58-41.
After missing the season opener due to gastroenteritis, he finished the season with a disappointing 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Lastimosa said that it was an accident, but according to PBA regulations, any player who does such an action is automatically ejected, whether or not it was intentional.
Even yet, TNT prevailed by a slim margin because of Jayson Castro’s takeover of the ball and Jewel Ponferrada and Brian Heruela’s clutch plays in overtime that prevented their team from falling down by 17 points.
However, Hollis-Jefferson, who also had three assists, a steal, and a block to his line, was ejected, and Lastimosa was left to bemoan the situation.
After Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was evicted, Jayson Castro stabilized the ship, and in the extra period, Jewel Ponferrada and Brian Heruela combined to offer a surprising spark that prevented their team from losing by eighteen points.
Castro played over 31 minutes and finished with a team-high 23 points, eight rebounds, and four assists in the win that improved their record to 1-1.
With 2:52 left, Ponferrada scored four points in overtime, including the bucket that broke the 95-all deadlock. Ponferrada finished with 12 points.
The Tropa were able to maintain their lead despite the opposition’s comeback thanks to the experienced big man and Heruela. As the final two minutes approached, Heruela was the one who increased their lead to 99-96.
With 16.9 seconds remaining, Ponferrada made careful not to waste Castro’s clever pocket pass as the FiberXers closed the gap to just one point behind Jerrick Balanza. This gave them the advantage 101-98.
TNT won because Mac Tallo and Tom Vodanovich, who had decent looks from deep, were unable to capitalize.
With Glenn Khobuntin scoring ten points and Calvin Oftana finishing with 19 points and five rebounds, the Tropang Giga will take on Terrafirma on Wednesday, November 22, at 4 p.m. at the Araneta Coliseum, SMART.
With 25 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists in the loss, which was Converge’s second in as many games, Vodanovich led the way.
With 11:18 remaining in the third canto, RHJ was sent out for an F2 infraction after “throwing” the ball to Mike Nieto after a dunk. Balanza scored eighteen points to assist the FiberXers in capitalizing on this early exit.
Late in regulation, the team was already down five points, 95-90, but Balanza made a three to cut the deficit, and with 15.2 seconds remaining, Vodanovich made good on the rookie forward’s missed jumper to equalize the score.
Castro missed what would have been the game-winning jumper with five minutes remaining in the contest.
Converge, which hosts the debuting Barangay Ginebra on Friday, November 17, at 8 p.m., will be welcomed by Justin Arana, who finished with 12 points and six rebounds, and Kevin Racal, who contributed 10 points. also at the Big Dome for its upcoming task.
- TNT 101 – Castro 23, Oftana 19, Hollis-Jefferson 14, Ponferada 12, Khobuntin 10, Williams 8, Heruela 5, Tolomia 4, Reyes 3, Galinato 2, Cruz 1, Tungcab 0.
- Converge 98 – Vodanovich 25, Balanza 18, Arana 12, Racal 10, Tallo 9, Winston 8, Stockton 6, Nieto 6, Melecio 4, Fornilos 0, Wong 0, Maagdenberg 0, Santos 0.
Quarter scores: 28-22; 55-39; 74-64; 95-95; 101-98