|Chris Tiu clutchly shined with 10 points, 6 assists and 4 rebounds. Rick Johnsen Dela Cruz|
MANILA-- Rain Or Shine squeaked past a gutsy Global Port squad, eking out a 96-90 win in the curtain-raiser of PBA Commissioner's Cup Sunday action at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.
Chris Tiu bucked a busted lip to knock in five points in the final four minutes as the Elasto Painters doused cold water on the Batang Pier fightback for a 5-1 win-loss card and solo leadership in the standings.
After being bloodied from a wayward elbow from import Malcolm White in a rebounds play, the 5-foot-11 guard came back and scored a driving lay-up to stretch the ROS lead to eight, 87-79, before hitting a cold-blooded three-pointer for a 92-83 with 1:14 remaining.
Sean Anthony and Nico Elorde kept Global Port in striking distance, scoring seven points to come within 90-94, but James Yap and import Reggie Johnson made two free throws for the final outcome.
Johnson led five other Elasto Painters in double figures, tallying a double-double with 18 points and 16 rebounds plus seven assists in 37 minutes of action.
Yap added 14 points, while Maverick Ahanmisi had 13 and Raymond Almazan chipped in 12.
Tiu finished with 10 points with six assists on 4-of-6 shooting from the field.
The game was temporarily stopped due to a scuffle with 3:20 left in the fourth which resulted to the ejection of Ahanmisi and Kelly Nabong. Four GlobalPort players were also slapped with technicals for entering the court.
White plagued with foul trouble but still scored 21 markers and eight boards for the Batang Pier, while Stanley Pringle and Sean Anthony issued 15 and 14, respectively. But it wasn't enough as the team dropped to 3-3 in the tournament standings.
Rain or Shine 96 - Johnson 18, Yap 14, Ahanmisi 13, Almazan 12, Tiu 10, Ponferada 9, Daquioag 7, Belga 6, Norwood 5, Torres 2, Nambatac 0.
GlobalPort 90 - White 21, Pringle 15, Anthony 14, Nabong 13, Tautuaa 8, Elorde 8, Grey 4, Javelona 3, Sargent 2, Guinto 2, Teng 0, Arana 0.
Quarters: 30-26; 45-45; 67-62; 96-90.
Follow him on Twitter: @jeloacosta