By JAY R. GOTERA
MANILA — The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters came back from a 16-point third quarter deficit to stun the Barangay Ginebra Kings, 118-112, as the PBA Commissioner’s Cup resumed Friday after a weeklong break to give way to the SEABA Championship.
The Painters snapped a two-game losing streak and improved to a 5-4 win-loss record, moving up to sixth place in the standings.
Ginebra’s second loss in seven games ended the Kings’ five-game winning streak.
New import Duke Crews, who replaced Shawn Taggart, made a huge splash in his PBA debut, leading ROS with 28 points and 22 whopping rebounds.
Jericho Cruz and Jay Washington provided the strongest local support, finishing with 19 and 16 points, respectively. Washington’s three straight free throws in the endgame gave ROS the lead for good. James Yap added 15 markers.
Justin Brownlee vainly tried to play hero for Ginebra once again, scoring nine straight points in one stretch of the final quarter, capped by a three-pointer that gave the Kings their last taste of the lead. Brownlee finished with 38 points, eight boards, and six assists.
Joe Devance added 19 points and four boards, while Japeth Aguilar chimed in 15 points, five rebounds, three blocks, and three assists in 28 minutes.
San Miguel 114, NLEX 108
The San Miguel Beermen roared to their sixth win in seven games, overpowering the new-look and still winless NLEX Road Warriors, 114-108.
The win formalized SMB’s entry into the playoffs and strengthened the team’s bid for a Top 2 finish that would the Beermen a twice-to-beat advantage.
Import Charles Rhodes showed devastating form once again, leading SMB with team-highs of 37 points and 19 rebounds. He also had three blocks and two assists.
Less than 24 hours after helping Gilas Pilipinas win the SEABA Championship on Thursday, June Mar Fajardo was back on the court for the Beermen, dishing out 12 points and four boards in 30 minutes.
Chris Ross nearly had a triple double with 15 points, 11 assists, and 7 rebounds along with four steals in 35 minutes. Arwind Santos scored 13 points while Alex Cabagnot and Marcio Lassiter chipped 12 markers apiece.
NLEX stayed winless after nine games. Import Wayne Chism led the Road Warriors with 22 points, four boards, three assists, and three blocks in a losing effort.
NLEX’s two new recruits — JR Quinahan and Alex Mallari — played well, with Quinahan contributing 12 points and five boards while Mallari had 11 markers and seven rebounds.
Game Saturday: Alaska Aces (4-3) vs. TNT KaTropa Texters (6-3).