Two-time Most Valuable Player James Yap led Rain or Shine to a 107-93 triumph over Blackwater on Friday in the Philippine Basketball Association Season 42 Philippine Cup at the Araneta Coliseum.
Yap notched 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting in the field on top of five rebounds to give Rain or Shine the solo lead with a 3-1 win-loss record.
“The difference in this game is we are moving the ball better,” said Rain or Shine coach Carlos Garcia during the postgame news conference. “I always emphasize the ball movement. I think we have to work on minimizing our turnovers.”
Blackwater controlled the opening quarter outscoring Rain or Shine, 19-16, behind the impressive effort of Dela Cruz, Raymond Aguilar and Ronjay Buenafe. But the Elite failed to sustain their momentum in the second canto.
The Elasto Painters, relying heavily on Yap, Raymond Almazan and Jewel Ponferada, unleashed a 9-3 run midway in the second period resulting in a 35-32 lead with 6:17 remaining.
Ponferada finished with 13 points; six rebounds and two blocks, while Jeff Chan and Don Trollano contributed 11 points each. Gabe Norwood finished with nine points as Beau Belga contributed eight points and five assists also for the Elasto Painters.
Yap sank a three-pointer to give Rain or Shine a 46-39 lead at the halftime break. The Elasto Painters posted more rebound than the Elite in the first half, 29-19, and second chance points, 13-6.
Rain or Shine had 11-of-15 shot in the free throw line against the Elite’s 2-of-2.
Rain or Shine banked on Ponferada’s five-point output to beat Blackwater in the third period. Trollano closed the third frame with a buzzer-beating triple providing the Elasto Painters with a 75-59 advantage entering the payoff period.
Almazan extended Rain or Shine’s lead to 94-77 with still 6:53 left to go in the fourth quarter. Yap stretched their advantage to 22-points, 99-77, after a jumper under the last five-minute mark.
Rain or Shine didn’t look back after establishing a 20-point lead.
Forward Raymond Aguilar scored 15 points on 5-of-7 shooting in the field, while this year’s top overall pick Mac Belo posted 13 points, nine rebounds and three assists to lead the Elite.
Blackwater, after winning its first two games, suffered back-to-back losses for a 2-2 win-loss record.
RAIN OR SHINE 107—Yap 15, Almazan 14, Ponferada 13, Chan 11, Trollano 11, Norwood 9, Ahanmisi 8, Belga 8, Washington 7, Cruz 6, Tolomia 5, Ibanes 0, Matias 0.
BLACKWATER 93—Aguilar 15, Belo 13, Dela Cruz 12, Sena 12, Buenafe 11, Pascual 8, Gamalinda 7, Pinto 6, Cervantes 4, Miranda 3, Ababou 2, Banal 0, Forrester 0, Perez 0.
Quarter Scores: 16-19, 46-39, 75-59, 107-93