Rain or Shine thought it had a date with destiny. Big Game James cancelled the reservation.
James Yap played his finest game of the tournament, sizzling for 30 points to lead B-MEG to a 91-81 victory over Rain or Shine in Game Five of the Governors’ Cup finals Wednesday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum. The win allowed the Llamados to stay alive in the best-of-seven series, which Rain or Shine still leads, 3-2.
“Enjoy ko na lang ‘tong series, dahil down kami,” he said. “Wag lang naming bigyan ng pressure ang sarili namin, enjoy lang kami.”
B-MEG coach Tim Cone was all praises for his superstar after the game.
“He stepped up big time. He walked the talk and put the game on his shoulders. It’s like a Michael Jordan performance from him,” he said.
Yap sizzled for 11 points in the first period of the heated encounter, which saw the two-time Most Valuable Player called for a flagrant foul penalty one for punching Rain or Shine defensive specialist Jireh Ibanes.
“Ok lang naman sana kung pisikal lang, pero kung medyo sinasadya na, hindi na maganda yun,” he said.
But the penalty did not seem to deter Yap, who capped his 18-point first half performance with a late three-pointer before the break to give the Llamados a 44-41 lead.
The Llamados were holding on to a 59-56 lead at the 4:37 mark of the third quarter when import Marqus Blakely, who finished with 24 points and 13 rebounds, tangled with Rain or Shine enforcer Beau Belga. It led to double technical fouls and Belga’s ejection. That seemed to fire up B-MEG, which ended the third period with a nine-point lead, 70-61, before cruising to victory in the fourth quarter.
B-MEG won despite missing Marc Pingris, who did not see action because of a stiff neck. Mark Barroca came off the bench and scored nine points and grabbed seven rebounds while Yancy de Ocampo had 14 points and 14 rebounds for the Llamados.
The Elasto Painters have another shot at winning the title on Friday in Game Six.
B-MEG 91 – Yap 30, Blakely 24, De Ocampo 14, Barroca 9, Simon 7, Urbiztondo 2, Villanueva 2, Reavis 2, Gaco 1.
RAIN OR SHINE 81 – Cornley 25, Chan 14, Arana 11, Cruz 8, Ibanes 6, Buenafe 5, Belga 4, Quinahan 4, Tang 2, Rodriguez 2, Norwood 0.
Quarters: 19-18, 44-41, 70-61, 91-81