HARD WAY FOR RAIN OR SHINE IN WIN OVER BARAKO BULL

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20090513

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HARD WAY FOR RAIN OR SHINE IN WIN OVER BARAKO BULL




Lewis-led Elasto Painters near outright semis berth with 8th win in 13 games

A first-ever free ride to the semifinals remains a possibility for Rain or Shine.

Coach Caloy Garcia was right when he said playing Barako Bull won’t be a picnic.

The Elasto Painters were pushed to the limit by the Energy Boosters and had to ride anew on clutch baskets by import Jai Lewis to avoid the upset axe and escape with a 101-97 decision Wednesday night at the Cuneta Astrodome.

The hero in Rain or Shine’s 118-116 OT win over Talk 'N Text last week, Lewis scored seven of the his team’s last 11 points and his tip-in shot off his own miss broke the last deadlock at 97 and put the Elasto Painters ahead to stay with 50.3 seconds to play.

A tip-in by Lewis with three-tenths of a second left in the extra period also won it for Rain or Shine over the Tropang Texters.

But it was Solomon Mercado, who sealed the Elasto Painters’ eighth win in 13 games that kept their hopes of making it straight to the semifinals of the 2009 Motolite PBA Fiesta Conference.

Mercado, who struggled offensively all night, made a key steal off Jeffrei Chan in front of the Barako Bull bench and quickly rushed the ball downcourt before scoring on lay-up that made the count 101-97 with 32 seconds remaining.

“Barako Bull is a dangerous team. Good thing we hit our stride in the stretch,” said Lewis, who took scoring honors with 27 points and grabbed 14 rebounds for his ninth double-double in 11 games.

“We were all pressured before the game. I guess it’s because we’ve never been in this situation before. Barako Bull played a hell of a game. We’re just lucky the breaks worked on our side in the end game,” Garcia said.

Eyeing a first-ever outright semis berth since entering the league in 2006, the Elasto Painters will wind up their campaign against Coca-Cola in Antipolo City on Friday, needing an all important win to remain in contention for one of the two outright semis berths.

The top two teams in this classification advances outright to the Final Four. League leader San Miguel Beer, with its 9-2 mark, is likely to clinch the top seed.

“I hope we could stay focused and keep the momentum going. At least for one more game,” Garcia said.

Jay-R Reyes scored 16 points, Mercado added 14 on a 6-of-13 shooting and had five assists. Gabe Norwood turned in 12 points, three assists and three steals for Rain or Shine, which outscored Barako Bull, 9-4, in the last 3:30 minutes.

Import Daryan Selvy scored 24 for Barako Bull his lowest output in three games and fouled with 1:52 remaining with the game on the line.

The Energy Boosters fell to 2-11. Regardless of the result of their last game against Coca-Cola, the Energy Booster will advance to the wildcard phase as lowest seed and will have to win twice against the No. 3-ranked team.

Rain or Shine appeared to have had the game all wrapped up when Jay-R Reyes hit a 3-pointer for a 92-87 lead with 6:48 left.

But the Elasto Painters blew hot and cold in the next four minutes and Barako Bull capitalized, going on a 10-5 run, with Chan accounting for six points, including two free throws that tied the count for the eighth and last time at 97-97 with 70 seconds remaining.

Chan finished with 13 points, so did Jojo Duncil and Alex Crisano, who played his best game as an Energy Booster since being acquired prior to the conference. (DBC)

The scores:

Rain or Shine 103 - Lewis 27, Reyes 16, Mercado 14, Norwood 12, Wainwright 11, Arana 8, Tang 7, Isip 4, Dulay 2, Laure 2, Salangsang 0.

Barako Bull 97 - Selvy 24, Chan 13, Duncil 13, Crisano 13, Espinas 9, Sharma 8, Membrere 6, Ybanez 5, Najorda 4, Juntilla 2, Holper 0, Hrabak 0.

Quarterscores: 27-32, 49-50, 82-73, 103-97.

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HARD WAY FOR RAIN OR SHINE IN WIN OVER BARAKO BULL :: Comments

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Post on Thu May 14, 2009 5:22 am by KICKER

Although gusto kung manalo ang barako bull, expected ko na na mananalo ang ROS dito dahil lamang sila sa firepower.

Tsk tsk tsk....this is bad..lumiit ang tsansa ng PF sa semis spot..

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