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Monday, March 4, 2024

Pogoy, Khobuntin star as TNT draws 1st blood in PBA semis

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Mikey Williams slowed down in the final period but RR Pogoy and Glenn Khobuntin took over as TNT Tropang Giga pulled off a 108-96 swamping of the Magnolia Chicken Timplados Hotshots to take a 1-0 lead in the 2022 Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup semifinals Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum.

Williams struck with 26 points, but was scoreless in the fourth period, with Magnolia’s Rome de la Rosa holding him down.

But it didn’t matter.

Mikey Williams of TNT scores with a jumper in a PBA Philippine Cup semifinal game at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday. The Tropang Giga drew first blood against the Magnolia Chicken Timplados following a 108-96 win.

Pogoy and Khobuntin had 23 and 18 points and took care of business as they carried the offensive brunt for Williams with their timely hits in the last period, keeping Tropang Giga out of trouble.

Pogoy and Khobuntin combined for 11 points in the last 12 minutes for TNT, which will shoot for a 2-0 lead on Friday in Game 2.

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The 6’2” Pogoy, who can switch positions from a shooting guard to a small forward, used his versatility to the hilt as the Tropang Giga established a 17-point spread, 105-88, with his driving shot in the remaining 3:07.

Khobuntin unloaded a trey with 1:08 left to increase TNT’s edge to 18, 108-90.

“Since Day 1, we kinda jelled pretty well. These are the guys I looked up to when I need questions answered,” said Williams as he leaned on Pogoy and Khobuntin for baskets that he could not take in the last period.

Calvin Abueva banged in 18 points for Magnolia, which will seek to bounce back in Game 2.

Williams and Kelly Williams led the way in the first period using a 12-3 run, with Jayson Castro making seven of 12 points during their initial attack.

Castro’s layup in the final 32 ticks propelled TNT to a 28-19 spread.

Williams banged in 12 points in the second canto, with his floater and triple giving TNT a 17-point edge, 54-37.

Pogoy shot nine points, while Williams had eight in the third, while Castro’s layup with 47 seconds left gave TNT its biggest edge, 84-60.

“I’m blessed to have players who can play multiple roles. I think we were flexible today. We built our team’s rotation for flexibility and agility,” said TNT coach Chot Reyes.

The Scores:

TNT 108 – M. Williams 26, Pogoy 23, Khobuntin 18, Castro 12, Montalbo 8, Erram 6, K.Williams 4, Marcelo 4, Tungcab 3, Rosario 2, Ganuelas-Rosser 2, Alejandro 0, Cruz 0.

Magnolia 96 – Sangalang 14, Abueva 18, Jalalon 14, Dionisio 14, Laput 12, Lee 9, Barroca 7, Dela Rosa 5, Wong 2, Reavis 1, Zaldivar 0, Corpuz 0.

Quarters: 28-19, 54-37, 86-66, 108-96

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