PBA Governors' Cup

Castro takes over vs Alaska as TNT barges into win column

Delfin Dioquino
Castro takes over vs Alaska as TNT barges into win column

STILL GOT IT. Jayson Castro comes through for TNT with a vintage performance.

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Scoreless in the first half, Jayson Castro finishes with a team-high in points to propel TNT to its first win in the PBA Governors' Cup

MANILA, Philippines – Jayson Castro erupted in the second half to lift TNT to a come-from-behind 81-77 win over Alaska in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Araneta Coliseum on Friday, December 17.

Scoreless in the first half, Castro finished with a team-high 20 points to go with 6 assists, 5 rebounds, and 3 steals for the Tropang Giga, who earned their first victory after dropping a sorry two-point loss to NLEX in their conference debut.

It was all Castro in the endgame as he scored all of their last 6 points, knocking down a three-pointer that gave TNT a 78-73 lead with 2:30 minutes left and a free throw in the final 10 seconds that shut the door on the Aces.

A Castro miss from beyond the arc with 40 ticks left kept Alaska afloat, but Aces guard Robbie Herndon airballed an ill-advised three-pointer that would have tied the game.

Fouled on the ensuing play, Castro sealed the win by sinking the second of his two foul shots as the Tropang Giga handed Alaska its second straight loss after a 2-0 start.

Glenn Khobuntin backstopped Castro with 16 points, while import McKenzie Moore chimed in 13 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 assists, although he struggled from the field with a poor 3-of-12 clip.

Mikey Williams added 12 points for TNT, which also benefitted from the 6-point, 9-rebound, 3-block performance of big man Poy Erram.

The Aces enjoyed a lead as big as 11 points late in the third quarter, 59-48, before the Tropang Giga ended the period with a 14-3 blitz capped by a last-second Castro layup to knot the score at 62-62 going into the final salvo.

Import Olu Ashaolu pulled out all the stops for Alaska with 29 points and 18 rebounds, but his monstrous double-double went down the drain as he lacked sufficient help from the locals.

Jeron Teng was the only other Aces player in double figures with 13 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists.

The Scores

TNT 81 – Castro 20, Khobuntin 16, Moore 13, M. Williams 12, K. Williams 6, Erram 6, Banal 5, Marcelo 2, Pogoy 1, Heruela 0, Reyes 0, Alejandro 0.

Alaska 77 – Ashaolu 29, Teng 13, Brondial 9, Herndon 7, Digregorio 7, Tratter 6, Ahanmisi 5, Tolomia 1, Taha 0. 

Quarters: 9-15, 30-35, 62-62, 81-77.

– Rappler.com

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.