MANILA, Philippines – Import KJ McDaniels carried the scoring cudgels in overtime as NLEX dealt NorthPort another sorry loss, 120-115, to stay unbeaten in the PBA Governors’ Cup at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig on Friday, December 10.
McDaniels dropped 11 of his conference-high 40 points in the extra period and chalked up 15 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 blocks, and 2 steals in another stellar all-around outing to propel the Road Warriors to their second straight win to start the conference.
The Batang Pier knotted the score at 111-111 off a Robert Bolick and-one before McDaniels went on a personal 7-2 blitz to give his side a 118-113 lead with 12 seconds remaining.
Bolick then missed a triple and Kevin Alas secured the victory for NLEX by canning his two foul shots.
It was also Alas who showed nerves of steel in regulation as he coolly sank three straight free throws that sent the game into an extra period.
Up 102-99, NorthPort almost had the win in the bag after McDaniels threw an errant pass, but the Batang Pier immediately lost possession no thanks to an Arwind Santos turnover that led to a Calvin Oftana steal.
Oftana then fed the ball to Alas, who drew a foul on NorthPort import Cameron Forte during a three-point attempt and bailed the Road Warriors out with three clutch charity shots to force overtime.
Alas chalked up 21 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists, while Mike Miranda chimed in 13 points in the win.
Oftana also delivered for NLEX with a near double-double of 10 points, 9 rebounds, and 3 assists as he scored 5 points in the extra period, including a booming triple that set the tone for the Road Warriors’ big quarter.
Don Trollano had 8 points and 11 rebounds for NLEX, while JR Quiñahan put up 8 points and 2 blocks.
Forte churned out 17 points, 23 rebounds, and 5 assists to lead the way for the Batang Pier, who once again failed to close out a comeback win and fell to a 0-2 record.
Just like its conference-opening loss to Alaska where it stormed back from a double-digit hole only to lose in the endgame, NorthPort erased a 14-point deficit and held a lead as big as 6 points but wasted several chances to come out with the victory.
The Batang Pier particularly struggled at the stripe, missing 19 of their 34 free throws.
Greg Slaughter had a team-high 22 points and 7 rebounds, Arwind Santos netted 20 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 steals, while Bolick added 18 points, 14 assists, 6 rebounds, and 2 steals in the losing effort.
NLEX 120 – McDaniels 40, Alas 21, Miranda 13, Oftana 10, Trollano 8, Quiñahan 8, Magat 4, Cruz 4, Semerad 4, Varilla 3, Rosales 3, Paniamogan 2.
NorthPort 115 – Slaughter 22, Santos 20, Bolick 18, Forte 17, Malonzo 14, Taha 9, Ferrer 7, Balanza 7, Rike 1, Elorde 0, Grey 0.
Quarters: 30-19, 57-50, 84-75, 102-102 (reg.), 120-115 (OT).