Against a Petron Blaze squad out of contention, Talk ‘N Text played with intensity to seal the top spot in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
The Tropang Texters unloaded 33 points in the third period en route to a one-sided 107-80 triumph on Wednesday night at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Six players scored nine points or more for the Tropang Texters led by Jayson Castro, who had 19.
Castro scored 11 points while Jared Dillinger unleashed 13 of his 16 points in the second period when the Tropang Texters started to pull away, as Talk ‘N Text finished its elimination campaign with a 7-2 record.
Talk ‘N Text notched an outright berth in the semifinals, and are scheduled to plunge back into action at the earliest on April 8.
“We came to the game as if we were going to war. My instruction to them was not to give other teams something to play for. I knew that [Petron] will fight for their sister teams,” said Reyes, referring to B-MEG and Ginebra, which will figure in a playoff for the second semifinals spot after the Tropang Texters’ victory.
“This elims is a sprint to the finish, but it’s tough.”
Import Donnell Harvey finished with 15 points, 12 rebounds and two steals, while Jimmy Alapag contributed 11 points and Kelly Williams chipped in 10 for the Tropang Texters. Japeth Aguilar added nine points, most of which came during garbage time.
Talk ‘N Text (107) – Castro 19, Dillinger 16, Harvey 15, Alapag 11, Williams 10, Aguilar 9, Reyes 7, Fonacier 6, Carey 6, De Ocampo 5, Gamalinda 3, Raymundo 0.
Petron (80) – McDonald 20, Santos 16, Yeo 11, Miranda 11, Ildefonso 6, Guevarra 4, Tugade 4, Al-Hussaini 2, Reyes 2, Lanete 2, Cabagnot 2, Rizada 0.
Quarterscores: 26-21; 49-39; 82-63; 107-80.