GlobalPort had a mountain to climb at the start of the playoffs versus elims top finisher Rain or Shine.
Barangay Ginebra, San Miguel Beer and Powerade were the three teams that previously overcame a twice-to-beat disadvantage against the No. 1 seed. Ginebra did the trick against Mobiline in the 1999 Philippine Cup, San Miguel versus TNT in the 2002 Governor's Cup and Powerade versus BMeg in the 2012 all-Filipino.
The Batang Pier has scaled half of the ascent, and now try to reach the summit as they face off with the Elasto Painters in a do-or-die duel in their PBA Commissioner's Cup quarterfinals matchup at the MOA Arena in Pasay City Thursday.
Coach Pido Jarencio and his troops seek to become only the fourth team in PBA playoffs to topple the No. 1 seed in the quarterfinals as they tangle with the E-Painters at 7 p.m.
Behind a lethal trey by Jonathay Grey then a defensive gem by Malcolm White at endgame, GlobalPort nipped Rain or Shine, 114-113, over at the Smart Araneta Coliseum Tuesday night.
"So we're now even. Gagawin namin ang dapat namin gawin para kunin yan," said Jarencio, hinting at going all out at clinching a first Final Four appearance for GlobalPort after its previous semis stint in the 2016 PBA Philippine Cup.
Jarencio said it would be tough but they're glad to have a chance at it.
"Importante buhay pa kami at may tsansa pang umusad," said Jarencio.
The E-Painters would've been the first to the semis but squandered a 16-point spread, 89-73, late in the third period and missed crucial charities inside the final minute.
ROS blew the game despite White picking up a fifth foul early in the fourth.
"With Malcolm on the bench with fouls, our locals worked hard. We started running which is what's really our strength. We can't execute when we go to halfcourt game," said Jarencio. "Malamang yun pa rin ang gagawin namin."
Not lost on Jarencio was the tremendous firepower and boost provided by Grey.
"Kinausap ko siya sabi ko bigyan mo naman ako ng magandang laro. At nag-deliver naman. So kasama na sa rotation yan," said Jarencio.(SB)