|Reggie Johnson won it at the line for Rain Or Shine. PBA Media Bureau|
By Ivan Saldajeno
ANTIPOLO--Rain Or Shine scored its third straight win in the PBA Commissioner's Cup in a tight manner, subduing NLEX, 98-97, at the Ynares Center on Wednesday night.
A crucial free throw from Reggie Johnson was the difference in the game as the Elasto Painters held off the Road Warriors, featuring new import Arnett Moultrie.
ROS was actually down, 92-95, with 3:01 remaining when the team scored five straight points off two free throws from Chris Tiu and a crucial triple from Jay Washington to take a 97-95 lead with 1:47 remaining.
JR Quinahan tried to answer with a three of his own only to be deflected by Gabe Norwood. However, Moultrie got the ball and put it back in to force a 97-all deadlock with 58 seconds remaining.
NLEX got a chance to retake the lead as Gabe Norwood lost the ball at the baseline, but with the team out of timeouts, Kiefer Ravena could only settle for a triple that he muffed.
The E-Painters opted to go for the win without calling a timeout, but Tiu and Washington missed their three-point attempts.
Luckily, Johnson got the ball and was fouled on the third try. He missed the first free throw, but he sank the second for the 98-97 lead with 7.8 seconds remaining.
The Road Warriors had one final crack for the win, but Tiu swiped the ball from Juami Tiongson to save the win for the E-Painters.
Johnson collected 27 points, 14 rebounds, three assists, and three blocks, while Tiu and Raymond Almazan each tallied 12 markers for ROS.
Moultrie made 24 points, 17 boards, three dimes, and one block in his debut for NLEX.
Ravena came close to a triple-double with 23 points, eight caroms, and eight assists with one steal and two blocks.
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