|Don Trollano put up huge numbers for the Elite. PBA Images|
MANILA--Despite a third quarter storm that outscored the team's entire output in the first half, Blackwater still needed to weather one last push from NorthPort before taking a 96-89 win in their PBA Season 45 battle at the Angeles University Foundation Sports and Cultural Center on Monday night.
Down by as much as 11 in the first quarter thanks to the Batang Pier's 15-4 start sparked by a 9-0 run, the Elite erupted for 41 points, more than the 38 they scored in the first 24 minutes, in the third to turn things around and eventually took a lead as much as 17 early in the fourth.
NorthPort responded with a 12-0 run to eventually bring the game down the wire with the team just down by four, 93-89, with 1:02 to play.
NorthPort had a chance to trim the lead further after Frank Golla missed a triple for Blackwater, but Roi Sumang stripped the ball from Kevin Ferrer and found Ed Daquioag all alone for the dagger layup with 29.2 seconds left.
Sumang and Don Trollano each tallied 17 points for the Elite, who won for the first time under new coach Nash Racela.
Mac Belo, who struggled in form last season, seemed to have found his rhythm again under his former mentor at Far Eastern University, making 16 markers, six rebounds, two assists, and one steal.
Chris Standhardinger led the Batang Pier with 23 points, 10 rebounds, six assists, and two steals, while Sean Anthony added 22 markers, 13 caroms, and six dimes.
Blackwater 96 -- Trollano 17, Sumang 17, Belo 16, Daquioag 13, Magat 8, Tolomia 8, Desiderio 4, Canaleta 3, Dennison 3, Salem 3, Golla 2, Shaw 2, Dario 0, Gabriel 0
NorthPort 89 -- Standhardinger 23, Anthony 22, Lanete 14, Nabong 7, Elorde 7, Taha 5, Manganti 3, Ferrer 3, Subido 3, Cruz 2, Revilla 0
Quarterscores: 21-25, 38-47, 79-65, 96-89
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