PBA Commissioner’s Cup

Earl Clark torches TNT with 45 as NLEX nails 1st win with Frankie Lim

Delfin Dioquino

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Earl Clark torches TNT with 45 as NLEX nails 1st win with Frankie Lim

BEST GAME. NLEX import Earl Clark outduels TNT counterpart Cameron Oliver in a much-needed win.

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Earl Clark puts NLEX on his back to help give Frankie Lim his first win as the Road Warriors' head coach after back-to-back losses at the helm

MANILA, Philippines – An explosive performance from Earl Clark proved too much for powerhouse TNT as NLEX hacked out a 110-101 win in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig on Wednesday, October 19.

Clark erupted for a conference-high 45 points on top of 16 rebounds and 4 blocks, giving Frankie Lim his first win as the Road Warriors’ head coach after back-to-back losses at the helm.

That skid looked set to extend after the Tropang Giga grabbed a 77-74 lead through the first three quarters before Clark connived with Kevin Alas in the final period, which saw NLEX outscore TNT 36-24.

Clark and Alas scored 11 each in the final salvo, while Matt Nieto drained key buckets down the stretch as the Road Warriors held off a Tropang Giga side seeking a third straight victory.

Limited to a conference-low 15 points in a blowout loss to Magnolia, Clark redeemed himself and shot an ultra-efficient 70% (19-of-27) from the field.

Alas backstopped Clark in scoring with 24 points off the bench, while Don Trollano chipped in 16 points and 5 rebounds.

“It means a lot for us,” said Lim about his breakthrough win with NLEX that came almost a month since his appointment following the shock exit of former Road Warriors head coach Yeng Guiao.

Nieto fired 12 points, including a clutch three-pointer with three minutes remaining that gave NLEX a 104-96 lead before Clark and Alas took the Road Warriors home.

TNT import Cameron Clark churned out monster numbers of 26 points, 22 rebounds, and 5 assists, but the Tropang Giga missed his offense in the endgame as he went scoreless in the fourth quarter.

Roger Pogoy posted 19 points and 6 rebounds, while Mikey Williams netted 16 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists for TNT, which dropped to 2-2.

NLEX, meanwhile, improved to 3-2.

The Scores

NLEX 110 – Clark 45, Alas 24, Trollano 16, Nieto 12, Miranda 9, Rosales 3, Chua 1, Varilla 0, Fonacier 0, Celda 0, Magat 0.

TNT 101 – Oliver 26, Pogoy 19, M.Williams 16, Oftana 11, Erram 10, Castro 8, Montalbo 6, K.Williams 5, Tungcab 0, Alejandro 0, Ganuelas-Rosser 0.

QUARTERS: 26-15, 49-45, 74-77, 110-101

– 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.