Virtually silent in the first three quarters, Troy Rosario saved the best for last as he scored big baskets after big baskets in the payoff period to help unbeaten TnT KaTropa to a 103-100 squeaker over NorthPort Batang Pier.
Rosario waxed hot and fired 17 of his 22 markers in the fourth quarter, knocking down a huge three-pointer that pushed TNT ahead at 101-100 after trailing by nine, and icing it with two more charities in the closing second.
For the Gilas Pilipinas forward, the late game outburst was his way of atoning for his lackluster play both on offense and defense in the early goings.
"Alam ko kailangan na ako ng team. Hindi naging maganda yung opensa ko nung first three quarters. I think five points lang ako so kailangan ko na talagang bumawi," said Rosario, who finished with a 57 percent marksmanship.
The 6-7 Rosario added he also wanted to make up for his defensive shortcomings by helping the team in another way.
"Ang dami kong breakdown sa depensa. Kung naririnig niyo kanina, talagang ako yung inaano ni coach kanina, so kailangan kong bumawi sa opensa," he said.
TNT had control through 24 minutes but NorthPort turned things around in the second half and pushed the KaTropa to a corner before Rosario caught fire.
" Naging aggressive sila sa opensa; halos lahat ng mga tira nila three points, tintakbuhan pa nga kami. Talagang kailangan talaga namin higpitan yung depensa sa fourth quarter pero ganoon pa rin, talagang nakaka-score pa rin sila nang nakaa-score.
"Iyung last two minutes lang talaga kami nanalo sa depensa," said the former National U star, who sealed the deal from the stripe in the last one second. (OL)