ROGER Pogoy may only be a rookie, but the young TNT wingman plays with the confidence of a veteran.
The 6-2 former Far Eastern University showed just that on Sunday, firing 17 points, none bigger than his three-point shot with under two minutes left to help TNT KaTropa beat a rallying Barangay Ginebra side, 100-94 in the opening game of their PBA Commissioner’s Cup semifinal series.
A deadly gunner, whose confidence grew further with his recent stints at Gilas, Pogoy’s heads-up play earned him the PBA Press Corps Player of the Week for the period of June 6-11.
Pogoy, who only turned 25 this past Friday defeated TNT teammate Ranidel de Ocampo and Star forwards Allein Maliksi and Aldrech Ramos for the weekly citation.
The Cebuano shooter’s transition to the pros is seamless considering that he is now playing under Nash Racela, his coach back in college where they won a UAAP men’s championship in 2015.
TNT is on the verge of a stint in the finals of the 2017 PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
After TNT’s Game One victory Anthony Semerad had a breakout game in TNT uniform as the KaTropa powered to a 2-0 advantage in the best-of-five semifinals.
Semerad converted four three-pointers in the fourth period, including the goal that pushed the Texters ahead for good which eventually led to a nail-biting 107-103 victory Tuesday.
Import Joshua Smith helped preserve the win after he blocked Justine Brownlee’s shot during the Ginebra possession. He then followed up a miss by Jayson Castro at the other end.
Ginebra managed to cut the gap with an emphatic 125-101 victory over Katropa in Game Three Thursday night.
The trio of Brownlee, Japeth Aguilar and Scottie Thompson found their range early to power the Kings to an early lead and then go on to score the most lopsided victory in the series.
But the biggest factor may have been the absence of Smith who complained of a hurting right foot early in the second period.
The hulking TNT import went out at the 6:54 mark of the second period and never came back.
He finished with only four points and seven rebounds in nine minutes of action. This after exploding 35 point in the Texters’ Game Two victory.
As we went to press TNT and Ginebra are playing a Game Four which could extend the series or send TNT to the finals of the 2017 PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
The 6’2” Pogoy was born June 16, 1992 in Minglanilla, Cebu.
He first shone in basketball as a high school varsity player at the University of Cebu.
He then joined the Far Eastern University Tamaraws under Racela and helped the team win the 2015 University Athletic Association of the Philippines crown in 2015.
He was a member of the Philippine team which won the gold medal during the 2016 SEABA tournament in Bangkok, Thailand. He again joined the team for the 2017 SEABA held in the Philippines where the country retained the crown.
He joined TNT KaTropa after the 2016 PBA Special Draft. He was among the 2017 PBA All-Stars.