TERRENCE Romeo showed his scoring brilliance once again, dropping a game-high 32 points, including eight triples, with five rebounds and four assists to lead GlobalPort Batang Pier to 110-96 demolition of NLEX in the 2017 Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City yesterday.
The league’s leading scorer dropped 22 of his total points in the first half, shooting 8-of-12. That proved vital as his team rode on his back to victory.
Stanley Pringle was likewise impressive, scoring 20 points, five rebounds and seven assists while JR Quinahan had 18 points and seven rebounds all for GlobalPort.
As a result, the Batang Pier is now in third place with its 5-3 card while the Road Warriors continue to struggle, dropping to 2-6 in a tie at the bottom with Meralco.
The San Miguel Beermen (7-1) and the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (5-2) lead the standings. Trailing them are the Alaska Aces (4-3), TNT KaTropa (4-3), the Phoenix Petroleum Fuel Masters (4-4) and the Blackwater Elite (4-4).
Bringing up the rear are Barangay Ginebra San Miguel (3-4), the Star Hotshots (3-4) and the Mahindra Floodbuster (2-5).
Romeo terrorized the NLEX defense with his unstoppable game. He sniped from the outside when given room, drilling eight of 15 triple attempts. He drove in when guarded closely to score inside or pass to an open teammate.
GlobalPort gained tight grip of the contest after a 19-7 blitz midway in the second period that gave it a huge 42-26 double-digit lead at the 5:20 mark of the period after a Nino Canaleta triple.
At the half, Batang Pier carried a 50-38 advantage.
Romeo torched the Road Warriors with six triples in only eight attempts in the first 24 minutes of the game alone to help his team take command.
Quinahan was also big in the opening half, logging 11 of his total output there as he teamed up with Romeo to lead the charge for GlobalPort.
The Batang Pier kept pounding the Road Warriors in the second half, leading by as much as 21 points, 82-61, after a Josh Urbiztondo triple with 40 seconds left in the third frame.
Only the top eight teams will make the quarterfinals with the top two finishers having a twice-to-beat incentive against the lower-ranked teams. The teams in the middle of the standings will figure in a best-of-three duel.
Carlo Lastimosa led NLEX with 19 points.
As of this report, league-leading San Miguel Beer (7-1) is pushing for a seventh straight win as it battles second-running Rain or Shine (5-2).
The Beermen are already safely into the quarterfinals while the Elasto Painters can book their ticket should they emerge victorious.
Both teams are also chasing a top two finish for the twice-to-beat incentive.
For today, Saturday the action continues as the scene shifts to Iloilo City as struggling teams Barangay Ginebra (3-4) and cellar-dweller Meralco (2-6) figure in an anticipated rematch of last Governors’ Cup finals at 5 p.m. in an out of town encounter.
The Gin Kings haven’t really found a consistent groove while the Bolts are on a five-game slide.
Both teams are facing a must-win situation as they are out of the top eight at the moment.