PBA: Belga powers Rain Or Shine past Ginebra in OT

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 27 2020 09:32 PM | Updated as of Oct 27 2020 10:30 PM

Beau Belga scored five of his 20 points in overtime to tow Rain or Shine past Ginebra. PBA Media Bureau.

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) -- Rey Nambatac hit a big shot to tie the game in regulation, and Beau Belga finished off the task as Rain Or Shine outlasted Barangay Ginebra in overtime, 85-82, on Tuesday night at the AUF Gym in Angeles City, Pampanga. 

In a battle between two teams coming off their first losses in the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup, it was the Elasto Painters that secured a bounce back win. They improved to 4-1 in the conference, rising to solo second in the standings. 

Ginebra, for its part, dropped to 4-2.

Belga was superb, scoring five of his team-high 20 points in the extra period, while adding 10 rebounds and four assists. Mark Borboran added 16 points, while James Yap had 13 markers.

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The Elasto Painters led by as much as 15 points in the first half, but their missed free throws in the final period paved the way for the Gin Kings to claw their way back in the contest. A Stanley Pringle jumper gave Ginebra the lead, 74-73, with just over two minutes to play in regulation.

Rain or Shine blew its chances to go ahead when Mark Borboran missed two free throws, and Gabe Norwood misfired on a midrange jumper with under 10 seconds to go. Forced to foul, ROS sent LA Tenorio to the free throw line where he gave the Gin Kings a three-point edge, 76-73, with 6.3 seconds to go.

That was more than enough time for the Elasto Painters, however. Nambatac brushed off the defense of Aljon Mariano to drill a clutch three-pointer that tied the game with 2.1 seconds left.

"I said from the beginning, Rey is a different kind of player," said ROS coach Caloy Garcia. "He's gonna be the future of the PBA, he's gonna be a superstar eventually."

Veteran guard Gabe Norwood ensured that there will be an overtime after he picked off Pringle's inbound pass.

In overtime, it was Belga who took over as he nailed a layup off his own miss for an 80-78 lead, then drained a booming three-pointer with a minute and a half to play for a five-point ROS spread, 83-78.

"Probably, this is the best game I've seen (Belga) play," said Garcia. "Where Beau goes, we go."

Pringle's bucket with just over a minute to go gave Ginebra some life, but both teams faltered in the ensuing possessions before Jewel Ponferrada wrapped up the game for Rain or Shine with a floater to beat the shot-clock buzzer with just five seconds left.

It was an offensive grind for both teams, with Ginebra shooting just 38% from the field and Rain or Shine, 36%.

Pringle finished with 20 points, seven rebounds and six assists, while Scottie Thompson's superb 21-point, 10-rebound game ended up as a footnote after Ginebra absorbed a second consecutive loss.