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Ginebra outlasts TNT in OT to take Finals opener

Ian Suyu



(PBA Images)

CLARK — Brgy. Ginebra held down TNT to just two points in overtime to carve out a 100-94 victory in Game 1 of the best-of-seven Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Philippine Cup Finals Sunday at the Angeles University Foundation Arena here.

The Gin Kings buckled down on defense in the extra five minutes as they forced the Tropang Giga to commit a couple of turnovers in the early goings of the extension and turned to veterans LA Tenorio, Stanley Pringle and Japeth Aguilar for crucial plays down the stretch.

Aguilar delivered a monster performance with a double-double of 25 points off an 11-of-14 field goal shooting and grabbed 16 rebounds. He scored four point in the extra period including an emphatic two-handed slam dunk in the last 19 seconds of the game that sealed the deal for Ginebra.

Stanley Pringle finished with 27 points, seven rebounds and seven assists while Scottie Thompson also provided extra energy with 15 points, nine rebounds and five assists.

Tenorio posted 12 markers and 10 assists including the crucial dish to Arvin Tolentino that sent the game to overtime and back-to-back dimes in the last two plays of the Gin Kings in the extension. Tolentino closed his night with 14 points with his last field goal coming in the last five seconds of regulation.

Ginebra head coach Tim Cone lauded his wards’ impressive team effort especially in the overtime.

“I remember saying to the team during a time out: That’s how to play a team! It was really a tremendous effort from them,” said Cone.

Pringle and Aguilar opened up the scoring in the overtime as Ginebra kept TNT scoreless for three and a half minutes.

RR Pogoy ended TNT’s dry spell before Aljon Mariano scored on a layup followed by Aguilar’s slam with 19.6 ticks left.

“LA really ran the floor well, we know that he could trust him in the finals. Japeth and Scottie really did tremendously on defense,” Cone said.

“We got a lot of contribution from our players and that’s the way we should perform to win against TNT.”

Ray Parks carried the Tropang Giga with 20 points and four rebounds before fouling out late in OT. Pogoy finished with 19 points and six rebounds.


Box Scores:

GINEBRA (100) – Aguilar 25, Pringle 24, Thompson 15, Tolentino 14, Tenorio 12, Mariano 6, Chan 2, Devance 2, Caperal 0.

TNT (94) – Parks 20, Pogoy 19, Washington 14, Castro 12, Erram 10, Enciso 9,Rosario 8, Semerad 2, Montalbo 0, Reyes 0.

Quarters : 22-27 ; 41-41 ; 66-71 ; 92-92 ; 100-94