No Kiefer Ravena, no problem.
NLEX showed that there is still life without its star player as four Road Warriors stepped up in the fourth period and led Yeng Guiao’s wards past the Alaska Aces, 84-74, on Thursday in the Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup at the Don Honorio Ventura State University Gym in Bacolor, Pampanga.
Coach Guiao said they still have room in their roster for their primary 6-foot guard, who went to Japan last August 25 to take care of his contract that would pave the way for him to see action for the Shiga Lakestars in the Japan B.League.
Last June 2, the Lakestars signed in Ravena as their Asian import.
“We are hoping that Kiefer will catch up with us. Para makalaro si Kiefer, kailangang makalaro kami sa semifinals,” said Guiao.
JR Quinahan showed the way with 18 points, eight rebounds and a steal for the Road Warriors, who picked up their third win five games.
The 6’6” Quinahan, along with Kevin Alas, Jericho Cruz and Kenneth Ighalo, sank timely baskets in the final period as the Road Warriors pulled themselves out of a 64-all deadlock.
Quinahan’s defensive rebound and layup in the last 1:20 capped an 18-8 run, which handed the Road Warriors an 82-74 cushion in the closing minute.
Alas tallied 17 points, with a couple of driving layups in the last 5:24, allowing the Road Warriors to gain some distance, 73-68.
Ighalo and Cruz each had 15 points for the Road Warriors, who slowly moved ahead, 67-66, following the former’s triple.
A couple of penetrations from Cruz in the last 3:28 gave the Road Warriors an 80-71 spread.