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HOOPS

NLEX joins Converge, TNT in share of PBA lead

Unable to catch the last bus to the playoffs last conference, NLEX quickly made sure it shares a seat atop the Philippine Basketball Association Governors Cup leaderboard.

On Saturday night, the Road Warriors added NorthPort to their growing list of victims, winning 121-112 at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

Import Jonathon Simmons continued his solid showing, finishing with 33 points, eight rebounds and five assists while four other players wound up in double figures for the Road Warriors.

NLEX thus joined Converge and TNT on top of the standings with the identical 2-0 win-loss records.

Don Trollano also stepped up big, hitting 7-of-11 shots from the field and ending with 23 markers, while Kevin Alas came up with another all-around performance by contributing 18 points, five rebounds and six assists for NLEX.

Sean Anthony played his best game as a Road Warrior, adding 16, and top overall rookie pick Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser helped in with 13 for NLEX.

The Road Warriors produced 62 points inside the shaded lane and drew 48 points from players coming off the bench — 25 more than their rivals.

NorthPort absorbed its third loss in as many games in the continuous absence of top playmaker and ace scorer Robert Bolick.

“It’s the make-up of the team,” said NLEX coach Frankie Lim. “The last conference, I had to settle on what we had. At least this conference, we had new guys coming in and I can see that we’re a tough team now. I can see a lot of toughness in my players and that’s a good sign.”

The Scores:

NLEX 121 – Simmons 33, Trollano 23, Alas 18, Anthony 16, Ganuelas-Rosser 12, Semerad 9, Rosales 5, Nieto 3, Miranda 2, Pascual 0.

NORTHPORT 112 – Weathers 30, Tolentino 23, Zamar 15, Munzon 12, Calma 9, Sumang 9, Taha 7, Chan 3, Dela Cruz 2, Ayaay 2, Caperal 0.

QUARTERS: 26-31, 63-60, 97-91, 121-112.

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