The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters continued its fine form for the second straight game, defeating the newly-crowned Commissioner’s Cup champion B-MEG Llamados, 100-94, Friday night at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
The win gave the Elasto Painters the solo lead early in the Governors’ Cup with a 2-0 win-loss slate.
Ryan Arana scored his team’s last five straight points in the final two minutes of regulation before Gabe Norwood, Jamelle Cornley and Beau Belga joined the fray in the extra period, steering Rain or Shine to the impressive victory.
“It’s just a big advantage for us to play B-Meg on their first game. We’re trying to win close games, and this game was a good test for us. In our first game, we had a good lead, but Alaska caught up with us. This game against B-MEG was a big test for us because we faced a champion team,” said Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao.
The Elasto Painters showed poise under pressure, fighting off a furious rally by the Llamados that erased a 16-point halftime lead.
Rain or Shine trailed by as much as nine points, 63-54, after Peter June Simon hit a three-pointer with 1:54 left in the third period.
The Elasto Painters gallantly fought back, just when they appeared to be losing steam, with Arana’s heroics forcing overtime.
Cornley, Norwood and Belga were able to make big plays in extra period to outlast a Llamados team that missed the services of two key frontliners, Marc Pingris and Joe Devance.
The wide-bodied Cornley had three points in overtime, Norwood had a three-pointer, and Belga scored off a spin move that gave the Elasto Painters a 97-94 lead.
Guiao credited the team’s early preparation for their success to start the tournament, which features a nine-game elimination round that makes every match matter.
“We’ve been preparing hard early in this conference. We know we have to win as many games as we can very early. That’s in our minds,” added Guiao.
RAIN OR SHINE (100) — Cornley 25, Lee 17, Cruz 15, Belga 11, Norwood 10, Chan 8, Arana 7, Quinahan 7, Matias 0, Tang 0, Buenafe 0, Ibanes 0.
B-MEG (94) — Blakely 28, De Ocampo 17, Yap 14, Simon 13, Reavis 7, Villanueva 6, Urbiztondo 4, Intal 4, Gaco 1, Barroca 0, Burtscher 0, Bono 0.
Quarters: 26-19, 42-40, 58-56, 88-88, 100-94