Rain or Shine gets the first win of the conference, Meralco nabs second straight win

The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters got their first win of the Commissioner’s Cup at the expense of Barangay Ginebra. Rain or Shine downed Ginebra, 104-81, to rise up to 1-2. Ginebra falls back to .500 at 2-2.

Rain or Shine got big games from the Rey Nambatac-Denzel Bowles duo. Nambatac caught fire from beyond the ac, dropping 30 points with seven three-pointers. He shot 71% from the field and 63% from the outside. Bowles had an all-around monster game with 25 points, 17 rebounds, six assists, two steals and two blocks. Brownlee was the lone bright spot for Ginebra with 30 points.

After a tight first quarter, the Elasto Painters started to pull away in the second period and never looked back. Nambatac got the Elasto Painters rolling when he drilled back-to-back triples to turn a two-point lead into an eight-point advantage near the end of the first half. Rain or Shine ended up taking a seven-point lead heading to the half, keeping that separation all throughout the third period.

Rain or Shine blew the game wide open in the final period. Up by seven to start the third period, the Elasto Painters blitzed Ginebra for a 14-2 run to build a 22-point lead. Javee Mocon came off the bench to spark the run. He scored back-to-back floaters to start the run and added a three-point play midway through. Jjay Alejandro helped out his fellow rookie with two strong layups during the same stretch.

The Rain or Shine starters returned to the game and kept Ginebra at bay all the way to the final buzzer.

In the first game, the Meralco Bolts took advantage of the undermanned Phoenix Fuel Masters to win their second straight game, 101-95. Meralco jumps up to 3-2 while Phoenix gets knocked down to 1-2.

Gani Lawal continued to put up monster numbers for the Bolts. He led them with 28 points and 26 rebounds. The back court combo of Baser Amer and Chris Newsome supported Lawal with a combined 38 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.

Matthew Wright led Phoenix with 20 points. The Fuel Masters paraded a new import, Richard Howell and were playing without Calvin Abueva and head coach Louie Alas.

Meralco went on their run in the second half. After a tight first half, the Bolts got separation from the Fuel Masters midway through the third period. Down by four points, Lawal led the Bolts on a 9-0 run with five straight points. The Bolts were able to take an eight-point lead heading to the fourth quarter as the rest of the team joined in on the scoring barrage. Meralco scored 34 points in the third quarter to take control of the game.

In the fourth period, the Fuel Masters tried to get back in the game. They got as close as one point after a Howell basket in the paint with two minutes left in the game. But Meralco had answers in the final moments in the game. Lawal immediately answered with a score in the paint to increase the lead back up to three. Ranidel De Ocampo and Newsome were able to sink their free throws to keep Meralco ahead all the way to the end.