Photo from PBA

TNT survived an agonizing windup and escaped with a 95-92 win over Rain or Shine and ended the calendar year on a positive note Sunday, Dec. 26 in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Tropang Giga nearly saw the game slip away from their hands after the Elasto Painters cut a 12-point deficit down to only 93-92 behind the shooting of Rey Nambatac and import Henry Walker.

Luckily for TNT, Walker missed a go-ahead three in the final seconds and Poy Erram hit two free throws to eventually go 2-2 in the season-ending conference.

Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year frontrunner Mikey Williams scored 25 points on 7-of-14 shooting with five rebounds and six assists as TNT welcomed new import Aaron Fuller with a win.

Fuller, back for another tour of duty after past stints with NLEX and Blackwater, came in to replace the injured McKenzie Moore and put up 13 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks.

“This is the first time the players saw Fuller,” said coach Chot Reyes. “He just got out of quarantine last night, so he wasn’t able to practice. So we were doing things on the fly, we were doing a lot of adjustments on the fly, on the court. 

“And that’s why it entailed a lot of flexibility. ability to adjust and agility on our part. That was our thinking coming into the ball game,” added Reyes.

RR Pogoy hit 18 points on 7-of-14 shooting, Erram had 15 points, nine rebounds and two blocks while Ryan Reyes and Jayson Castro added 11 apiece.

Rain or Shine fell to 2-3 after absorbing back-to-back losses despite 32 points, nine rebounds, three assists and three steals from Walker. 

TNT trailed 57-51 in the third but went on a hot streak in the final eight minutes of the period for a 77-65 lead going into the fourth.

The Scores:

TNT 95 — M. Williams 25, Pogoy 18, Erram 15, Fuller 13, Reyes 11, Castro 11, K. Williams 2, Heruela 0, Exciminiano 0, Khobuntin 0, Alejandro 0, Marcelo 0, Banal 0.

RAIN OR SHINE 92 — Walker 32, Mocon 13, Ponferada 12, Belga 11, Nambatac 9, Norwood 6, Asistio 5, Santillan 3, Caracut 1, Torres 0, Borboran 0, Wong 0, Jackson 0.

Quarters: 21-27, 44-47, 77-65, 95-92.

Source: Manila Bulletin (