Philippine basketball

Arana, Balanza show way as Converge whips Terrafirma by 37 in PBA On Tour

Delfin Dioquino
Arana, Balanza show way as Converge whips Terrafirma by 37 in PBA On Tour

DOUBLE-DOUBLE. Justin Arana dominates for Converge against Terrafirma.

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Justin Arana and Jerrick Balanza each score 24 points in a rousing debut for Converge in the PBA On Tour

MANILA, Philippines – Justin Arana and Jerrick Balanza formed a potent one-two punch and powered Converge to a 119-82 rout of Terrafirma in the PBA On Tour at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig on Friday, May 26.

Entering his sophomore season, Arana posted a double-double of 24 points and 12 rebounds as the FiberXers enjoyed a rousing debut in this series of exhibition games.

Balanza also delivered 24 points off the bench for Converge, which pulled away for good behind a big second quarter after leading by just 22-18 at the end of the opening frame.

Arana, Jeron Teng, and Kevin Racal each scored 8 points in the pivotal second period as the FiberXers outscored the hapless Dyip 35-22 to enter the break comfortably ahead at 57-40.

Converge saw its lead swell to as big as 41 points, 116-75, off a three-pointer from Bradwyn Guinto with under two minutes left.

Teng finished with 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists, while newcomer Mike Nieto – acquired through a trade from Rain or Shine – put up a 12-point, 12-rebound double-double for the FiberXers.

Jeo Ambohot also recorded a double-double in the win with 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Like Nieto, newly acquired guard Adrian Wong from Magnolia made his presence felt for Converge with 11 points and 3 rebounds.

“We’re still in the process of building up,” said FiberXers head coach Aldin Ayo. “We started early. The players have responded well.”

Ending the previous PBA season with just three wins in 33 games, Terrafirma continued its losing ways as it committed more turnovers (16) than assists (12).

Juami Tiongson topscored in the losing effort with 17 points and Kevin Ferrer chimed in 12 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 steals.

The Scores

Converge 119 – Arana 24, Balanza 24, Nieto 12, Teng 12, Ambohot 11, Racal 8, Ebona 7, Stockton 5, Guinto 5.

Terrafirma 82 – Tiongson 17, Ferrer 12, Daquioag 11, Alolino 8, Go 7, Cahilig 5, Taladua 5, Alanes 5, Camson 4, Gomez de Liano 4, Calvo 2, Ramos 2, Grospe 0, Mina 0.

Quarters: 22-18, 57-40, 85-58, 119-82.


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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.