TNT routs Phoenix to secure semis berth in Governors’ Cup


TNT routed Phoenix Super LPG, 132-105, on Wednesday night to advance to the semifinals of the Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

But TNT head coach Jojo Lastimosa couldn’t hide his frustration over their lousy first-quarter performance where they trained, 13-20, at one point.

“There’s just a lot of frustrations in the first half because I think we ecxpected too much from ourselves that we can easily beat Phoenix,” Lastimosa said. “But it wasn’t.”

“When we couldn’t get the lead, we were frustrated,” added Lastimosa, whose wards had to regroup in the second quarter for a close 66-64 lead at the half.

“At halftime, we had to put our level of frustration down,” he said. “We cannot play frustrated basketball and that’s what we did.”

The Tropang Giga chemistry went to work in the third quarter where they outscored the Fuel Masters, 34-19.

They carried the momentum for a 32-22 fourth-quarter where they also established the game’s biggest margin at 120-92.   

Import Rondae Hollis-Jefferson had another all-around game and finished with a triple-double of 18 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists with four steals.

Roger Pogoy added 25 points, 11 rebounds, seven assists and four steals, while Jayson Castro made 20 points and Glenn Khobuntin had a career-high 19 points for TNT, the No. 1 seed with a twice-to-beat advantage over No. 8 Phoenix.

Calvin Oftana scattered 15 points and Mikey Williams got 14 points plus seven assists also for TNT, which will face either No. 4 Meralco or No. 5 Magnolia in the semifinals.

Import D’ Vaughn Maxwell led Phoenix with 23 points and 10 rebounds.    

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