MANILA, Philippines – Matthew Wright drained the game-winning triple in overtime to lift Phoenix to an enthralling 120-117 win over Blackwater in the 2019 PBA Governors' Cup at the Araneta Coliseum on Friday, November 15.
Wright, who sent the game to an extra period off 3 straight three-pointers, broke the 117-117 deadlock with a corner trey with 1.2 ticks left as the Fuel Masters salvaged a victory before heading into an early vacation.
Limited to just 8 points through the first 3 quarters, Wright was unconscious in the 4th and overtime quarters, wounding up with 28 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists.
Although it was a no-bearing game between two of the bottom teams in the standings, Phoenix pulled out all the stops to give retiring player Doug Kramer a fitting exit despite trailing by double-digits late in regulation.
The Elite held a 106-96 lead with 1:39 minutes left in the 4th period and were primed to avoid a last-place finish before the Fuel Masters unloaded the overtime-forcing 13-3 run – capped with 3 consecutive Wright triples.
A Roi Sumang and-one with two seconds left in the extra quarter almost forced a second overtime for Blackwater, but Wright delivered the killing blow from the left corner for Phoenix, shrugging off two defenders.
The Fuel Masters ended the conference with a 3-8 record for 11th place, while the Elite slipped to 12th and last place with a 2-9 card.
Import Alonzo Gee notched his first win with the Fuel Masters after churning out 34 points, 12 rebounds, 7 assists, and 2 steals, while Kramer – who bid farewell to a 12-year PBA career – had 3 points and 10 rebounds.
RR Garcia chipped in 17 points, Dave Marcelo chalked up 10 points and 5 assists, while JC Intal pumped in 9 points and 9 rebounds in the win.
Import Marqus Blakely was all over the floor with 37 points, 17 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks, and 2 steals for the Elite, but his side fizzled out in the end after leading by as much as 14 points in the second half.
KG Canaleta delivered 25 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 steals in the loss.
Phoenix 120 - Gee 34, Wright 28, Garcia 17, Mallari 10, Intal 9, Chua 9, Perkins 4, Jazul 3, Kramer 3, Napoles 2, Gamboa 1, Marcelo 0.
Blackwater 117 - Blakely 37, Belo 25, Canaleta 12, Sumang 10, Tolomia 9, Cruz 7, Dario 6, Salem 6, Trollano 5, Desiderio 0, Al-Hussaini 0, Javier 0.
Quarters: 22-16, 45-46, 73-81, 109-109, 120-117.
Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.