Lee, Star prevail over Yap, ROS in first match-up since trade

By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY--Paul Lee outscored James Yap in their first Star-Rain Or Shine meeting since their blockbuster trade, and Star walked away with a 99-91 win at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Sunday night.

Lee waxed hot in the second half, while Aldrech Ramos came alive in the fourth quarter as the Hotshots scored their third straight win in come-from-behind fashion that gave them a huge boost ahead of their showdown with Barangay Ginebra San Miguel next Sunday at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue.

A 15-5 run put ROS up, 65-55, in the third quarter, but Star answered with its own 15-5 run to tie the game 70-all later in the period, setting up a wild fourth quarter.

The Elasto Painters got the lead back, 88-84, midway in the fourth, but the Hotshots went on the game-turning 12-0 run capped by triples from Lee and Ramos to put them up, 96-88.

Jay Washington kept ROS in the game with a trey, but Ramos got the three points back with his own jumper that turned out to be the dagger.

Lee scored 10 of his 14 points in the second half, while the back-to-back crucial triples made up Ramos' fourth quarter burst.

PJ Simon led Star's early game attack with nine points in the first quarter before settling for 16 points overall.

Raymond Almazan tallied 19 markers, 13 boards, and one steal for ROS, which failed to tie San Miguel at the top of the standings as the team joined its tormentor at 3-2.

Yap struggled in his first game against the Purefoods franchise, only tallying nine points.

Box Scores:

Star 99-Simon 16, Jalalon 14, Lee 14, Ramos 12, Maliksi 11, Pingris 11, Melton 6, Sangalang 6, Dela Rosa 5, Barroca 4, Reavis 0

Rain Or Shine 91-Almazan 19, Washington 14, Tolomia 11, Norwood 10, Yap 9, Ponferada 8, Ahanmisi 7, Belga 6, Cruz 5, Chan 2

Quarterscores: 23-23, 42-41, 74-75, 99-91

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