NLEX vented its frustrations of missing the PBA Philippine Cup playoffs on Terrafirma with a 127-101 demolition at the Angeles University Foundation in Pampanga on Wednesday, November 11.
Kiefer Ravena churned out 23 points on 5-of-8 shooting from deep to go with 5 rebounds and 4 assists as the Road Warriors, who finished at 9th place with a 5-6 record, wrapped up their campaign on a high note.
The win would have kept NLEX in contention for the quarterfinals, but its fate was already decided a day before when Rain or Shine secured the last playoff berth with a win over TNT.
“If we still had 2 or 3 more games, we’re still getting better,” Road Warriors head coach Yeng Guiao said as they won 4 of their last 5 games after a horrendous 1-5 start.
“Nobody really knows how to get by easily with the intricacies of the bubble,” Guiao added.
Raul Soyud had 16 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists, while Jericho Cruz chimed in 12 points, 6 assists, and 2 steals in the win that saw NLEX overcome a first-quarter deficit.
The Road Warriors outscored the Dyip 74-45 in the middle quarters to break the game wide open.
Asi Taulava made his presence felt in the victory with 11 points, 4 rebounds, and 3 blocks in what could be the final game of his storied PBA career that started in 1999.
CJ Perez put up 27 points and 10 rebounds for the Dyip, who ended their stint with a 1-10 record.
Glenn Khobuntin and Aldrech Ramos had 18 and 15 points, respectively, in the losing effort.
NLEX 127 – Ravena 23, Cruz 12, Semerad 11, Soyud 11, Taulava 11, Ayonayon 9, Paniamogan 9, McAloney 9, Miranda 8, Ighalo 7, Quinahan 5, Galanza 5, Varilla 0.
Terrafirma 101 – Perez 27, Khobuntin 18, Ramos 15, Camson 10, Celda 7, Tiongson 6, Batiller 4, Balagasay 2,Faundo 3, Cahilig 8, Gabayni 1, Agovida 0.
Quarters: 23-26, 55-44, 97-71, 127-101.