ITS Fil-foreign connections would not Converge's slide get stretched any further.
Maverick Ahanmisi and Mike Digregorio delivered the most telling points as the FiberXers beat Terrafirma, 97-84, Wednesday at the Mall of Asia Arena to snap out of a two-game rut in the PBA Philippine Cup.
Fil-Nigerian Ahanmisi scored 14 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter while Fil-Italian Digregorio added 12 of his 19 in leading Converge out of the game's 12th and last deadlock at 72-all and into the runaway finish.
David Murrell (15 points), Taylor Browne (10 points) and Tyrus Hill (nine points) also posted new career highs while Justin Arana submitted a double-double of 10 and 12 rebounds as the FiberXers improved to a 3-2 record overall while keeping the Dyip winless after four starts.
Converge coach Jeff Cariaso said motivation from his team stemmed mainly from the respect it accorded its opponent. "With a game like this we wanted to come in understanding that they are a lot better than their record," he said.
"Terra's a tough team," added Cariaso. "They've a couple of injuries... but we know how good they can be with the remaining guys they have."
Cariaso also lauded his charges for winning the rebounding battle, 53-46, which went with their overall plan.
"We wanted to focus just on the defensive end," said Cariaso. "We wanted to win that (rebound) category. We feel like if we win that category that will always give us a chance. That's where we focused on tonight."
Joseph Gabayni notched 18 points and seven boards to pace Terrafirma while Aldrech Ramos, Juami Tiongson and Eric Camson, back from a back injury that caused him to miss a 74-97 loss to Meralco last Saturday, added at least 13 points each.
The Dyip also engaged the FiberXers through a tournament-high 17 lead changes. But after Ahanmisi and Digregorio boomed in a triple each that sparked Converge's decisive breakaway, the wind started being taken out of Terrafirma's sails. (NC)
Converge 97 - DiGregorio 19, Ahanmisi 17, Murrell 15, Arana 10, Browne 10, Hill 9, AMbohot 8, Adamos 4, Ilagan 3, Stockton 1, Bulanadi 1, Lojera 0, Tolomia 0.
Terrafirma 84 - Gabayni 18, Ramos 15, Tiongson 13, Camson 13, Munzon 10, Balagasay 6, Calvo 4, Mina 3, Gomez de Liano 2, Cahilig 0.
Quarters: 17-21, 43-42, 63-62, 97-84