TNT pounces on NorthPort to nab fourth straight win in PBA Philippine Cup

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The TNT Tropang Giga staved off a hardfighting NorthPort Batang Pier squad, 117-112, on Wednesday afternoon in the PBA Season 47 Philippine Cup at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.

Veteran guard Jayson Castro helped TNT preserve the victory by hitting a clutch three down the stretch to help his team nab their fourth win in a row and improve to 6-2. Mikey Williams also continued to round into form after missing the start of the season due to an impasse during contract negotiations.

Playing without numerous players including dependable forward Troy Rosario, TNT hung tough and held a 111-110 lead after NorthPort guard Roi Sumang canned a triple with 50 seconds to go.

Castro, though, answered right back with a three-pointer of his own to raise their lead back to four with 38 ticks remaining. Castro, Roger Pogoy, and JP Erram later added free-throws to secure the win.

Williams led TNT with 27 points on 8-of-15 shooting, to go with seven rebounds. Pogoy, the pride of Talisay City, added 22 markers, five boards, four dimes, and two steals, while Castro and Erram had 17 apiece, the latter adding 14 rebounds and two blocked shots.

“Obviously, our objective is to win as many wins as possible before we play the giants at the end of our schedule,” said TNT head coach Chot Reyes. “But right now, the key is for us is to get better and develop our game.

“As you’ve seen in our past few games, hindi kami nakaka-score ng 80 or 90 points pero ganda ng depensa namin. This time, we were able to get a 100-point mark but we allowed our opponent to a hundred,” added Reyes.

NorthPort, which played most of the game sans star guard Robert Bolick who sprained his ankle and never came back, got a complete ballgame from Jamie Malonzo who had 27 points, eight rebounds, four steals, and three blocks.

Roi Sumang effortlessly slid in to Bolick’s position and 24 points and 10 assists.

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