PBA Governors' Cup

Tan feels NorthPort primed for elusive win as Bolick continues to sit out

Delfin Dioquino

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Tan feels NorthPort primed for elusive win as Bolick continues to sit out

WINLESS. It has been a rough start for Bonnie Tan and NorthPort.

NorthPort starts the PBA Governors' Cup with two straight defeats, but interim head coach Bonnie Tan keeps the faith

MANILA, Philippines – NorthPort interim head coach Bonnie Tan trusts that the Batang Pier will soon break through after they opened the PBA Governors’ Cup with back-to-back losses.

Down by double digits in the fourth quarter against Meralco, NorthPort fought back and even grabbed the lead but ultimately fell short in a 107-102 defeat on Thursday, January 26.

Roi Sumang and Marcus Weathers joined hands in a 13-2 run that swung an 87-94 deficit to a 97-96 edge before the Batang Pier crumbled, missing four of their last six field goals in the final 2:30 minutes.

“We had some open shots that our players were unable to finish. But the effort was there,” said Tan in a mix of Filipino and English.

Even as NorthPort remained winless, it performed significantly better compared to its conference opener against Converge, where it lost by 30 points last Sunday, January 22.

The resurgence of Sumang proved to be a bright spot for the Batang Pier as he finished with 23 points on top of 6 assists, 3 rebounds, and 3 steals after putting up just 5 points against the FiberXers.

“At least we’re one step forward. Hopefully, we can sustain this,” Tan added. “We feel we’ll win next game. Hopefully.”

Tan also hopes to welcome back star guard Robert Bolick, who got reduced to a spectator in their first two games of the tournament.

NorthPort said Bolick is out with a hamstring injury, although his absence has been attributed to his impending contract expiration at the end of January.

Bolick averaged 20.1 points, 6.1 assists, and 4.9 rebounds in the first two conferences this season as he currently ranks fourth in the statistical race for the MVP award.

“We presented our offer sheet. We laid it down to him. Hopefully, something positive happens next game,” Tan said.

NorthPort looks to crack the win column when it takes on NLEX on Saturday, January 28, at the Ynares Center in Antipolo. – Rappler.com

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.