MANILA, Philippines – The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters outlasted the Magnolia Hotshots, 84-77, in Game 1 of the 2019 Philippine Cup semifinals at the Araneta Coliseum on Friday, April 12.
Rookie Javee Mocon played like a seasoned vet in this one, dropping a team-high 15 points and 9 rebounds as Rain or Shine made the most out of Magnolia’s staggering 24 turnovers.
In contrast, the Elasto Painters only had 12 miscues for the night.
Beau Belga contributed 12 markers, 6 boards and 3 assists while Gabe Norwood scored 11 with 8 boards in the opener of the best-of-seven series.
“It’s great to win the first game but we just have to forget about the game and think about Game 2 right away,” said Rain or Shine head coach Caloy Garcia. “I know we won but we know that with the way coach Chito [Victolero] coaches, they’re gonna do good adjustments in the second game.”
Rain or Shine started strong with a 10-0 run, but Magnolia was quick to recover to end the 1st. The Hotshots then fully regrouped and led until early in the 3rd, where Ian Sangalang broke free for the easy layup and the eight-point lead, 47-39.
However, turnovers – which Rain or Shine converted into 26 points – and bad shooting plagued the Hotshots as the E-Painters erupted right after with a 15-1 run, ending with a Mocon floater at the 4:30 mark, 54-48.
Since getting back their 10-point lead after a James Yap triple early in the 4th, Rain or Shine never looked back and kept Magnolia at bay down the stretch.
Paul Lee led Magnolia with 15 points, but needed 13 shots to get there while Sangalang chipped in 13 markers but shot himself in the foot with a game-high 7 turnovers.
The Hotshots will try to bounce back in Game 2 on Sunday, April 14, still at the Araneta Coliseum.
Rain or Shine 84 – Mocon 15, Norwood 13, Belga 12, Daquioag 10, Rosales 9, Yap 8, Nambatac 7, Borboran 6, Ponefrada 2, Torres 2, Ahanmisi 0.
Magnolia 77 – Lee 15, Sangalang 13, Barroca 12, Jalalon 11, Reavis 9, Melton 7, Ramos 4, Brondial 4, Dela Rosa 2, Simon 0, Herndon 0.
Quarters: 19-16, 33-37, 61-58, 84-77.