By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
The Rain or Shine Elastopainters finally bagged their first win of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup after edging the Blackwater Bossing, 115-110, last December 2, 2023, held at the Philsports Arena.
Entering the must-win game with a five-game losing streak, the Elastopainters were eager to halt their dry spell and played an inspired brand of basketball for 48 straight minutes.
From the get-go, Rain or Shine executed their game plan and shot the lights out from the field which helped them control the tempo of the ball game until the final buzzer.
It was the young rising stars from the Elastopainters that sealed the deal as the duo of Adrian Nocum and Andrei Caracut provided the huge silencers when Blackwater attempted a comeback during the final frame.
In a span of seven minutes, Nocum became Rain or Shine’s spark plug after scoring eight huge points while also diming the ball twice.
Nocum continued being productive for head coach Yeng Guiao and wrapped up the win with 14 points, three rebounds, and two assists.
Meanwhile, Caracut top-scored Rain or Shine with 17 points built from an impressive 4/8 shooting from the field alongside four assists and two boards.
After Blackwater trimmed their deficit to just five points, 105-100, with 1:51 left in the game, it was Caracut who drained the cold-blooded three-pointer that extended their advantage back to eight points, 108-100.
Blackwater was able to convert a fast break deuce to get to within three points, 110-107, but Rain or Shine was able to convert their clutch free throws in the final 35 seconds.
Rain or Shine will aim for their first winning streak of the Commissioner’s Cup on December 8, 2023, when they face the NLEX Road Warriors.