The Magnolia Timplados Hotshots clamped down on defense in the fourth quarter and succeeded in shutting down Jayson Castro and Mikey Williams for a 105-97 repulsing of the TNT Tropang Giga on Friday at the Araneta Coliseum.
Mark Barroca, who kept an eye on Castro with Jio Jalalon, scored a game-high 25 points for the Hotshots, who earned their second win in five matches in Game 5 of their best-of-seven semifinals series in the 2022 Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup.
Barroca’s big effort equalled his conference high output when he also shot 25 points during their 81-87 loss to the San Miguel Beermen last June.
The Hotshots, with Paul Lee hitting 16 points apiece with Ian Sangalang and Calvin Abueva, will now have a chance to pull even with the Tropang Giga when they clash in Game 6 on Sunday.
“Kami na ang bahala ni Jio kay Jayson dahil may nagbabantay na kay Mikey. Mas maganda kasi na hindi sila sabay-sabay na pumuputok,” said Barroca.
Castro led the Hotshots with 18 points, but could only make one point in the last quarter, while Williams was scoreless in the last 12 minutes of action.
Defensive efforts on Castro and Williams allowed Magnolia to move ahead in the last canto behind baskets from Sangalang and Lee.
Lee’s two charities in the final 2:04 kept Magnolia up by eight, 102-94.
The Hotshots enjoyed an 11-point spread, 105-94, in the final 1:01 off Sangalang’s layup.
“We did a good job on defense. We did not change anything. We just sustained it for 48 minutes,” said Hotshots’ coach Chito Victolero.
Troy Rosario banged in 17, JP Erram shot 16 for TNT, while Williams had 13.
The Tropang Giga managed to come close, 61-66, in the last 7:18 of third off Williams two freebies, before the Hotshots tightened their defensive screws in the final period.
Magnolia 105 – Barroca 25, Lee 16, Sangalang 16, Abueva 16, Jalalon 15, Dionisio 10, Dela Rosa 3, Reavis 2, Escoto 2, Wong 0.
TNT 97 – Castro 18, Rosario 17, Erram 16, M. Williams 13, Pogoy 13, Khobuntin 12, K. Williams 6, Montalbo 2, Reyes 0, Ganuelas-Rosser 0.
Quarters: 28-26, 59-45, 81-73, 105-97.