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PBA: Easy win for G-Port

GlobalPort’s Joseph Gabayni tries to score against Meralco’s Nico Salva and Bryan Faundo in the PBA Philippine Cup yesterday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Batang Pier won, 107-88. (PBA Images)
GlobalPort’s Joseph Gabayni tries to score against Meralco’s Nico Salva and Bryan Faundo in the PBA Philippine Cup yesterday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Batang Pier won, 107-88. (PBA Images)
GlobalPort’s Joseph Gabayni tries to score against Meralco’s Nico Salva and Bryan Faundo in the PBA Philippine Cup yesterday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Batang Pier won, 107-88. (PBA Images)
GlobalPort’s Joseph Gabayni tries to score against Meralco’s Nico Salva and Bryan Faundo in the PBA Philippine Cup yesterday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Batang Pier won, 107-88. (PBA Images)

By Jonas Terrado

Games Wednesday (Mall of Asia Arena)
4:30 p.m. – Kia vs TNT KaTropa
7 p.m. – Phoenix vs Alaska

Kelly Nabong’s improved play since the start of the PBA Philippine Cup became more evident last night when he frustrated his former team with a double-double performance that set the tone for GlobalPort’s 107-88 rout of Meralco at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Perhaps motivated to show the Bolts what they lost after a heated exchange with then-assistant coach Jimmy Alapag in a semifinal game of last season’s Governors’ Cup led to his unceremonious exit, Nabong had 17 points and 17 rebounds to play the starring role in the Batang Pier’s one-sided victory.

GlobalPort improved to 3-3 for a share of fourth to seventh places with TNT KaTropa, Rain or Shine and Phoenix despite still missing the services of ace scorer Terrence Romeo to a knee injury.

The Batang Pier bounced back from a 107-93 loss to the San Miguel Beermen in a contest that saw them give the defending Philippine Cup champions all they could handle before losing steam in the late stages.

“We finished stronger talaga, talagang all-out,” said Batang Pier coach Pido Jarencio.

Another former Meralco player showed what his former employer missed as sophomore forward Jonathan Grey scored 13 of his game-high 24 points in the third quarter that saw GlobalPort extend the lead even further to complete the blowout.

But the star of the night was Nabong, who after being signed by the Batang Pier shortly before the start of the season became one of the coach Pido Jarencio’s key players alongside guard Stanley Pringle and forward Sean Anthony.

“Actually he’s really motivated dito sa season na to,” Jarencio said of Nabong. “Mula nung kinuha namin siya, yung full potential niya lumabas na. Nag-improve siya sa shooting niya, actually nag-matured siya after nung incident sa Meralco.”

LEE SUFFERS INJURY

Magnolia Hotshots guard Paul Lee expressed optimism yesterday that he’ll recover quick from a left sprained ankle he suffered in the team’s 91-81 win over TNT KaTropa.

The veteran guard injured his ankle at the 7:54 mark of the third period when he went to the basket for a layup but accidentally landed on the foot of TNT KaTropa’s Troy Rosario.

Lee said the injury is disappointing, but he’s confident he’ll recover in time for the knockout stage of the tournament.

First Game
GLOBALPORT 107 – Grey 24, Anthony 18, Pringle 17, Nabong 17, Gabayni 9, Araña 5, Guinto 5, Sargent 4, Juico 4, Elorde 2, Taha 2, Flores 0.

MERALCO 88 – Newsome 17, Hugnatan 17, Tolomia 15, Baracael 12, Hodge 7, Caram 5, Bono 5, Amer 4, Canaleta 4, Dillinger 2, Salva 0, Lanete 0, Ballesteros 0, Faundo 0.

Quarters: 29-16, 48-37, 82-60, 107-88.

What do you think?

Written by Tempo Online

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