PBA: NLEX claws NorthPort in heated clash

Thomas Robinson dominated for NLEX, but he had a heated moment with NorthPort governor Erick Arejola. Dennis Acosta
By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY--NLEX won its first game since Kevin Alas suffered his third ACL injury by taking down NorthPort, 112-104, on Wednesday night in the PBA Commissioner's Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Road Warriors waxed hot in the first quarter, dropping 37 points, but the Batang Pier bounced back in the second quarter by scoring 30 of their own to cut the lead down to seven at halftime, 60-53.

NLEX bounced back in the third quarter even led by as much as 17 points before ending the period ahead by 14, 91-77.

NorthPort threatened to come back in the game, cutting the lead down to six, 97-91, midway through the fourth, but NLEX held on in the end.

However, after the game, Batang Pier governor Erick Arejola exchanged some harsh words with Road Warriors import Thomas Robinson.

The confrontation spilled to the hallway with PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial and deputy commissioner Eric Castro needing to join other cooler heads in pacifying the situation.

Robinson led NLEX, which tied its victim at 2-2, with 30 points, 18 rebounds, two assists, and two steals, while Don Trollano added 29 points, 18 in the first quarter, two rebounds, one assist, and one steal.

Joshua Munzon led NorthPort with 22 points, two rebounds, two assists, and five steals, while Venky Jois chipped in 20 points, 19 rebounds, three assists, and four blocks.

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