Tiu notches new career-high to lift import-less Rain or Shine over NLEX
MANILA, Philippines – Chris Tiu notched a new career-high in points as Rain or Shine ended a dismal PBA Governors' Cup campaign on a winning note with a 107-101 win over NLEX at the Araneta Coliseum on Saturday, November 3.
Tiu, who is reported to retire by the end of the season with his contract expiring, delivered 30 big points on top of 5 assists and 4 rebounds to power the Elasto Painters to their third win despite missing import Terrence Watson.
The 33-year-old fired 17 of his output in the second half as Rain or Shine swung a 46-51 deficit at halftime to a lead that swelled to as large as 20 points in the 4th quarter, 101-81.
But the Road Warriors wouldn't go down without a fight after erecting a 16-2 spurt – capped by 3 triples from Larry Fonacier, Mike Miranda and import Aaron Fuller – to narrow the gap to 6 points with 1:25 minutes left in the game.
However, Dexter Maiquez scored a bucket and a foul shot to help Rain or Shine keep the win out of NLEX's reach, 106-97.
Norbert Torres delivered 12 points and 13 rebounds to compensate for the absence of Watson, who attended to his pregnant wife, while Maiquez and Rey Nambatac finished with 12 and 10 points, respectively, in the win.
Fuller paced the Road Warriors with 29 points, 12 rebounds and 7 assists against 5 turnovers.
Despite the loss that pushed it to 5-6, NLEX still reached the playoffs at 7th place.
Rain or Shine 107 - Tiu 30, Ponferada 13, Torres 12, Maiquez 12, Nambatac 10, Yap 8, Norwood 8, Daquioag 6, Onwubere 5, Borboran 3, Washington 0, Casino 0.
NLEX 101 - Fuller 29, Galanza 14, Miranda 12, Paniamogan 11, Taulava 9, Fonacier 8, Tiongson 5, Mallari 4, Quinahan 3, Rios 3, Monfort 3, Ighalo 0, Baguio 0, Marcelo 0, Tallo 0.
Quarters: 17-31, 46-51, 82-74, 107-101.