PBA: To conclude the “rookie” season, Stephen Holt hopes for continued success

Mar 2, 2024

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Terrafirma’s aim now is to remain consistent after a strong start to its PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup campaign on Friday night.

After defeating Converge 107-99, the Dyip got off to a strong start, but Stephen Holt and company remained cautious since they are still cognizant of what transpired in the Season 48 Commissioner’s Cup.

The 2023 #1 overall pick stated, now the next challenge for us is to continue to work hard, at the SMART Araneta Coliseum following the game.

As you may remember, Terrafirma started the season 2-1, but their lead was squandered when they dropped their next eight games.

There’s no better way for the Dyip to begin regaining that confidence than to ace their first test, which they did, outscoring the FiberXers by as much as 24 before displaying resilience in the closing stages to defeat the youthful team.

With a season-high 27 points on 12-of-17 shooting from the field, four rebounds, and ten assists, Holt himself helped pave the way.

His goal total surpassed his PBA career high of 26, which he had established against Meralco in their Commissioner’s Cup final on January 12 of last year. The seasoned traveler also demonstrated how much he is enjoying his new role with the club.

Even though Holt, a former NBA G-League player, has started just his second conference in Asia’s inaugural professional league, he and the rest of Terrafirma still have work to do.

Despite taking pride in his defense, the 32-year-old actually had five steals versus Converge, and he’s always improving it.

Meanwhile, the FiberXers were trailing by as many as 24 points in the third quarter, but Stephen Holt, Juami Tiongson, and Gelo Alolino made clutch plays to put them at bay. The latter team cut the margin to just six points three times in the last two minutes.

After losing their previous four games against the team, Tiongson finished with 30 points, while Stephen Holt contributed a season-high 27 points and 10 rebounds. Together, the backcourt duo helped the Dyip achieve a historic victory.

Tiongson led a 23-6 scoring burst in the second quarter to score 11 of his points, giving them a 50-27 lead that would hold them up for the remainder of the game.

The youth-heavy opposition fought back, but Holt stepped up in the second half to ensure they would stay in the lead.

With 1:51 remaining, Converge gained momentum behind Justin Arana and Jerrick Balanza and pulled within 101-95, but Terrafirma put an end to the run when Holt fed Tiongson during a fastbreak to increase their advantage to eight with 39.9 seconds remaining.

After that, the FiberXers came within two points more, but Alolino’s free throws and another bucket from Tiongson were enough to seal the victory.

In the triumph, Alolino and Javi Gomez de Liano each scored ten points, while Isaac Go added thirteen points and five rebounds.

Conversely, Justin Arana and Alec Stockton, who scored 18 points apiece and pulled down nine rebounds between them, led Converge. In the defeat, Bryan Santos scored 14 points on four three-pointers, while Alec Stockton finished with 17 points.

On Sunday, March 3, both clubs will play once more at the Big Dome. At 3 p.m., Terrafirma takes on NLEX on the hardwood, followed at 6:15 p.m. by Converge’s game versus NorthPort. final drink.

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