April 14, 2019

ROS bench making a difference in the series

James Yap said the ability the bench to contribute is making a difference for Rain or Shine in its Philippine Cup semifinal series against Magnolia.

The Elasto Painters continued to dominate the Hotshots in Game 2 largely on the steady contributions of their support crew particularly Javee Mocon, Rey Nambatac, Kris Rosales, Norbert Torres and Mark Borboran.

Their willingness to stand up and deliver enabled the Elasto Painters to overcome the absence of injured center Raymond Almazan and starting guard Maverick while easing the pressure to their go-to-guys like Yap, the team scoring leader in the eliminations but is averaging only eight points in the series.

But Yap claims he is not worried about his current struggles for as long as the bench continue to deliver.

ROS leads the best-of-seven series, two games to nil.

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"Sabi ko sa kanila na pagdating sa ganitong sitwasyon kailangan ready lahat at kailangan magtulungan," Yap said. "Di tayo magiging successful kung isang tao lang yung gumagawa. Pagdating sa playoffs, kailangan tulungan."

Turns out the team's young players are respond well to pressure.

Mocon, the rookie, produced 15 points and 10 rebounds in his first playoff appearance while Nambatac scored all eight of his points in the decisive third quarter in Game 1 as Rain or Shine outdueled Magnolia, 84-77.

The spotlight then shifted to Daquioag and Torres , whose outside shooting in Game 2 set the tone of the rout, 93-80, and pulled the Elasto Painters within two wins of advancing to the finals.

Torres hit 13 of his 16 points in the first quarter while Daquioag finished with 19 points.

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"Buti nagrereact sila at nakikinig lahat. Kung titignan mo, kahit sinong huhugutin ni coach, nakakashoot at nakakadepensa," noted Yap. (JT)