Terrafirma stuns Meralco; NLEX stays unbeaten

By Ivan Stewart Saldajeno

January 29, 2023, 9:11 am

MANILA – Terrafirma pulled off the first major surprise in the PBA Governors' Cup after upsetting Meralco, 96-88, on Saturday night at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

Behind the hot hands of Juami Tiongson, the heroics of Eric Camson and clutch free throws from Jordan Williams, the Dyip denied the Bolts a shot at going solo first in the team standing even as they withstood their opponents' last push.

Down 74-90 with five and a half minutes left, Meralco went on a 10-0 run to trim the gap to just six, 84-90, with 1:25 remaining.

They even had a chance to cut Terrafirma's lead further after Camson missed a three-point attempt, but he grabbed his own offensive rebound and laid the ball back in with 26 seconds left to eventually ice the game even as clutch free throws from Williams and Tiongson kept the Bolts at bay.

Tiongson went 6-for-9 from downtown to finish with 30 points alongside three rebounds, three assists and one steal for the Dyip, who moved up to 1-1.

Williams added 29 points, eight rebounds, three assists and five steals, while Camson tallied 13 points, 10 rebounds, one assist and one steal off the bench.

KJ McDaniels also put up 29 markers with 19 boards, four dimes, two steals and two blocks, while Aaron Black made 12 points, 12 rebounds, four assists and one block for the Bolts, which fell to 2-1.

In the nightcap, NLEX kept itself unblemished this conference with a 121-112 win against NorthPort.

The Road Warriors waxed hot in the second and the third quarters, amassing 71 points in total through the two periods before turning to their defense in the fourth quarter, where they held the Batang Pier to just 21 points, to seal the game.

Jonathon Simmons put up 33 points, eight rebounds, five assists and one steal, while Don Trollano added 23 points and two rebounds for NLEX, which is now at 2-0.

Marcus Weathers made 30 points, five rebounds, four assists, one steal and two blocks, while Arvin Tolentino added 23 points, four rebounds, two steals and two blocks for NorthPort, which dropped to 0-3.

Paul Zamar played his best game so far as a Batang Pier with 15 points on 6-of-9 shooting, three rebounds, and four assists.

The Scores:
First Game

TERRAFIRMA 96 – Tiongson 30, Williams 29, Camson 13, Cabagnot 8, Ferrer 5, Calvo 4, Alolino 3, Cahilig 2, Gabayni 2, Ramos 0, Gomez de Liano 0, Mina 0

MERALCO 88 – McDaniels 29, Newsome 13, Black 12, Maliksi 11, Quinto 9, Hodge 6, Banchero 6, Jose 2, Almazan 0

QUARTERS: 24-26, 52-50, 72-65, 96-88

Second Game

NLEX 121 – Simmons 33, Trollano 23, Alas 18, Anthony 16, Ganuelas-Rosser 12, Semerad 9, Rosales 5, Nieto 3, Miranda 2, Pascual 0

NORTHPORT 112 – Weathers 30, Tolentino 23, Zamar 15, Munzon 12, Calma 9, Sumang 9, Taha 7, Chan 3, Dela Cruz 2, Ayaay 2, Caperal 0

QUARTERS: 26-31, 63-60, 97-91, 121-112 (PNA)