Matthew Wright, not yet fully recovered from a sprained right ankle, scored the clutch points to power Phoenix Super LPG to a pulsating 92-89 victory over TNT Tropang Giga, yesterday, Sunday, November 22 at the Angeles University Foundation Sports Arena & Cultural Center Powered by Smart 5G.
Wright scored seven of his team’s final nine points as Phoenix posted its second victory in a row in this series to post a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five semifinals of the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup.
Wright finished with 25 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 steal to win Player of the Game honors.
“I just really had to man up and play through the pain. Play through the limited mobility. My ankle still hurts. It’s throbbing right now but I’m just glad we won,” said Wright in the post-game interview.
Meanwhile, Calvin Abueva dominated at both ends of the court for Phoenix to finish with another double-double of 24 points and 14 rebounds. He added 6 assists, 4 steals and 1 block.
Justin Chua received a pass from Abueva then drilled an open triple. Wright threw off a pair of defenders with a hesitation move then drove in to convert a layup to hike the Phoenix lead to 6 points, 85-79, with 3:43 to go in the game.
Parks converted 2 free throws for TNT but Wright countered with a crossover and a rhythm three-pointer to hike the Phoenix advantage to 7 points, 88-81, with 3:03 left to play.
Parks converted two more free throws and a layup to cut the Phoenix lead to just 3 points, 88-85 with 1:48 to go.
Jason Perkins missed his triple attempt. At the other end Roger Pogoy missed his own attempt but Troy Rosario was there to follow-up to cut the Phoenix lead to a point, 88-87.
Abueva drove inside and missed a layup attempt but Perkins followed it up to extend the Phoenix lead back to three, 90-87.
Parks then drove inside, missed his attempt but followed up his own miss to cut the lead back to one, 90-89.
Wright sealed the outcome of the match with a clutch turnaround fadeaway jumper to finalize the count, 92-89.
Parks, like Abueva, had a double-double of 19 points and 13 rebounds. He added six assists and 1 steal.
Ryan Reyes barreled inside to convert a layup which trimmed the Phoenix lead to just 2 points, 49-47, at halftime.
Abueva handed the ball to Wright and set a pick which freed the Phoenix guard from his defender. Wright drilled the trey to hike the Phoenix lead to 9 points, 62-53, with 8:31 to go in the third.
But TNT managed to cut the gap. Simon Enciso zipped a pass to a cutting Roger Pogoy who converted a layup to trim the Phoenix lead to just 4 points, 73-69, after three quarters.
Both teams had to bleed for points especially in the fourth period. Justin Chua received a nifty assist from RJ Jazul to score inside which hiked the Phoenix lead to 3 points, 77-74, with 6:54 to go in the game.
Pogoy and Jason Perkins traded three-pointers as Phoenix protected that 3-point advantage. 80-77, with 5:51 to play.
Phoenix Super LPG 92 – Matthew Wright 25, Calvin Abueva 24, Jason Perkins 11, RJ Jazul 11, Justin Chua 8, JC Intal 5, Jorey Napoles 3, Jansen Rios 3, Alex Mallari 2, Dave Marcelo 0, Brian Heruela 0, RR Garcia 0, Mike Gamboa 0.
TNT Tropang Giga 89 – Ray Parks 19, Simon Enciso 17, Troy Rosario 14, Jayson Castro 12, Roger Pogoy 8, Poy Erram 6, Kib Montalbo 6, Ryan Reyes 5, Jay Washington 3, Dave Semerad 0, Harvey Carey 0.
Quarter Scores: 22-24, 49-47, 73-69, 92-89.