• KaTropa seek third straight win vs Batang Pier

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    Chris Ellis
    PHOTO BY BOB DUNGO JR.

    TNT KaTropa guns for its third straight victory when it battles GlobalPort today in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Season 42 Governors’ Cup at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

    After stopping Blackwater’s three-game winning streak last Wednesday (117-96), the KaTropa try to move closer to grabbing a quarterfinals spot with a win over the Batang Pier in their 7 p.m. encounter.

    The Elite, meanwhile, hope to bounce back from an ugly loss as they battle the winless Kia in the opener at 4:15 p.m.

    TNT coach Nash Racela, whose team is holding a 4-2 win-loss mark, braces for a tough challenge from GlobalPort.

    “GlobalPort is a dangerous team with a complete line-up. We need to limit the production of Stanley Pringle, Terrence Romeo and their import Murphy Holloway,” said Racela.

    “We also have to be ready for teams focusing on (Glen) Rice defensively,” he added.

    Rice had 31 points, six rebounds and a conference-high seven steals against Blackwater.

    The Batang Pier, who are holding a 2-3 win-loss record, are itching to bounce back from a 112-115 loss to San Miguel Beer last week.

    Holloway, who is averaging 29.7 points, 21.2 rebounds and 2.7 blocks in four games, is expected to synchronize GlobalPort’s offense and defense together with Pringle and Romeo, the local leading scorer of the tournament with 25 points per game.

    “We need to bounce back and get a win against Kia. The character of our team will be put to a test in our game tomorrow coming off a loss last Wednesday,” said Elite coach Leo Isaac.
    Blackwater acquired new players in Chris Ellis and Dave Marcelo, two players they got from Ginebra in exchange for Art dela Cruz and Raymond Aguilar.

    Ellis and Marcelo are still unsure to play today, according to Elite team manager Johnson Martinez.

    Henry Walker, who is averaging 32.2 points and 20 rebounds per game in the tournament, will lead Blackwater anew. The team is holding a 3-4 slate.

    Picanto fight for their survival, as they need to sweep their remaining four games to stay in the hunt for the quarterfinals seat. They are currently at the bottom of the team standings with 0-7 mark.

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