TNT ends Magnolia reign with come-from-behind QF win

Jayson Castro and the rest of TNT KaTropa pulled a Houdini act in its upset of Magnolia Monday night. PBA Media Bureau.

By Ricky Manliguis

MANILA—TNT rallied in the second half to stun Magnolia, 98-97, and march into the semifinals of the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup Monday bight at the Araneta Coliseum.

Bobby Ray Parks Jr. fired two free throws with seven seconds left as the KaTropa completed the comback from 18 points down and foil the Hotshots' title retention-bid.

The victory also set up a semifinal showdown against sister team Meralcowhich grabbed the first semis seat Sunday.

With Magnolia enjoying a 80-68 edge on a corner triple by Rome Dela Rosa with 1:46 left in the third, TNT went on a tear. KJ McDaniels scored on a baseline lay-up for a three-point deficit, before finding Troy Rosario for a  wide-open long bomb to knot the count at 96, 32.7 ticks left.

After Romeo Travis split from the line for a 97-96 lead with 15 seconds left, Parks went for a rebound off a Jayson Castro miss and was fouled by Rafi Reavis. He sank both charities.

Magnolia had several chances to win the game, but McDaniels blocked Travis’ potential game-winning bucket to preserve the victory.

Castro led the TNT charge with 30 points and seven assists, while McDaniels had a double-double of 25 markers and 17 rebounds.

“We didn’t expect we’d come back. Hard work pulled us through,” said coach Bong Ravena.“Nakita naman natin. Hindi namin inexpect na makakabalik pa kami. Inisip namin, next game na lang uli. Maybe it’s God’s plan.”

Ravena also lauded his prized playmaker Castro, in his second game back from a calf injury.

“We’re really a different team with him (Castro) around,” he added.

Travis issued a 32-point, 26-rebound game, but it wasn’t enough for Magnolia. Dela Rosa had 13 points, even as Jio Jalalon and Paul Lee came away with 12 and 11, respectively.  

The scores:

TNT 98 - Castro 30, McDaniels 25, Rosario 12, Reyes 10, Pogoy 8, Parks 7, Digregorio 6, Williams 0.

Magnolia 97 - Travis 32, Dela Rosa 13, Jalalon 12, Lee 11, Barroca 9, Banchero 8, Sangalang 7, Pingris 4, Melton 1, Reavis 0.

Quarterscores: 22-26, 48-54, 68-80, 98-97.

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