11 June 2014

Bolts 85, Elasto Painters 104

The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters became the third team to lock up a quarterfinals berth in the 2014 PBA Governors' Cup after routing the Meralco Bolts, 104-85, on Tuesday (10 June 2014) at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.

The Elasto Painters (5-3) improved to third place beneath Talk 'N Text (5-1) and San Mig Coffee (5-2). Meralco's (2-6) playoff hopes are dimming after failing to move into the top eight, as they stand above only GlobalPort (1-6).

Arizona Reid led the way with 25 points, 15 rebounds and two steals. Raymond Almazan tied Gabe Norwood with 12 markers, while adding 15 board and four blocks to lead a platoon of nine Elasto Painters who scored at least five points tonight.

"We're just riding our momentum. We're still playing good defense, that's the reason we're winning," said coach Yeng Guiao. "Everybody's making a contribution to the team, even the guy and rookies coming off the bench.

"I hope it's not too late. We're trying to make the top four," Guiao added. "We started slow but we're trying to make up for it as of this moment, and we hope we don't lose steam."

Meralco looked crisp on offense in the first quarter, moving the ball to Gary David for three’s or to their forwards to exploit Rain or Shine's tentative defense. The Bolts outscored the Elasto Painters 11-1 on charities to help offset a pair of late triples, good for a 23-20 lead by the end of the period.

Cliff Hodge ripped the Elasto Painters with a four-point play early in the second to create a 34-21 advantage, but Rain or Shine rectified the situation with aggressive trapping and double-teaming, leading to bucket after bucket in the open court. While limiting Meralco to isolation plays for Mario West, the Elasto Painters dominated the last 10 minutes of the first half with an 18-point turnaround by the intermission. Led by 14 points from Arizona Reid, Rain or Shine established a 51-46 advantage at the break.

The Elasto Painters kept their foot on the pedal and got a couple of three-pointers from Chris Tiu and Beau Belga, taking a 63-50 advantage early in the third. West dropped six unanswered and helped Meralco close the gap, 65-61, but strong finishes by Rain or Shine at the basket allowed them to keep a 71-63 lead heading into the fourth.

The Rain or Shine bench put the game away early in the final canto, as Raymond Almazan, Jonathan Uyloan and TY Tang made huge plays on both ends of the floor and stretched the lead to 89-69. Their rally was marred only by a technical foul on RoS Coach Yeng Guiao for profane language midway through the quarter, as Meralco's attack remained lifeless and predictable to the Elasto Painters until the end.

Rain or Shine shot 39-of-78 (50 percent) from the field while limiting Meralco to a 23-of-67 clip (34.3 percent). Meralco though made 33-of-43 attempts (76.7 percent) from the foul line.

The Elasto Painters made a killing on fast break points, 23-11.

Mario West led all scorers with 29 points and eight rebounds. Cliff Hodge totaled 17 markers and five caroms, while Mike Cortez dropped 10 points. (Source: GMANews.tv)

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