May 21, 2024

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Barangay Ginebra and San Miguel Beermen pulled off similar victories against the Magnolia Hotshots and NLEX Road Warriors, respectively, in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup resumption at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena Sunday, October 23.

Justin Brownlee and Barangay Ginebra came from behind to escape past perennial rival Magnolia Hotshots, 103-97, in overtime to secure their third win in five outings (3-2) and share the third spot in the team standings with TNT Tropang Giga and Converge FiberXers.

The Kings handed the unbeaten Hotshots their first loss after six games, relegating them to second place in the team standings, currently topped by the Bay Area Dragons with a 6-1 card.

Ginebra Justin Brownlee shines

The prized Ginebra import Brownlee erupted with 26 points and 12 rebounds. He came out big in the endgame as he saved the day for Ginebra with a jumper to break the 97-all deadlock, then blocked Magnolia import Nick Rakocevic’s shot, sealing the win with two charities off the latter in the final 21.2 seconds.

The Tim Cone-coached Kings also leaned on Jamie Malonzo, who shared a piece of the limelight with his double-double performance of 18 markers and 14 rebounds, while Scottie Thompson and  Christian Standhardinger scored identical 14 points, and Japeth Aguilar added 13.

Cone said, “I think we came out a little tight and we’re getting frustrated, but we needed just one big run, and it was reminiscent of the Ginebra runs in the 90s. It’s been a while and it’s good to win.”

He recalled that when he left San Mig Coffee and went to Ginebra, they won nine to 10 straight games, but the Hotshots turned the table.

The Hotshots were ahead by 15 in the third period but the Kings staged a huge rally at the start of the fourth.

Ginebra forced an equalizer at 89-all behind Standhardinger’s under-goal shot and snatched a 97-93 lead on Thompson and Malonzo’s back-to-back baskets.

Then came the ever-reliable Brownlee who spoiled the Hotshots’ hot run.

Paul Lee and Rakocevic combined for 33 points, with the latter adding 17 boards for the Hotshots.

SMB Devon Scott

Meanwhile, the Beermen eked out a 124-116 win over the Road Warriors as Devon Scott delivered 26 markers, 10 rebounds, and seven assists amid his foul trouble.

Marcio Lassiter and Vic Manuel each chipped in 22 points to provide the biggest help for the June Mar Fajardo-less San Miguel team that improved to a 2-4 record.

Manuel canned four points in their 8-0 run following Don Trollano’s trey of NLEX to solidify their lead, 120-109, heading into the final two minutes.

CJ Perez, Jericho Cruz, and Mo Tautuaa made 16, 15, and 14 points, respectively.

“It’s a matter of mindset for the players. I kept on telling them that we have to fight. There’s no more June Mar so we cannot dwell on him and that’s what happened,”  SMB coach Leo Austria said.

He praised Scott’s energy rubbing off on his teammates, saying, “I think because of the import, ‘yung sipag niya (his hardwork), he keeps on running up and down… so it’s enough to motivate the players,” offered Austria. “I’m happy for the win. It’s a must-win for us.”

Earl Clark finished with 40 points and 25 rebounds while his fellow Road Warriors Justin Chua had 23 and Trollano with 21.

The Box Score

Barangay Ginebra 103 – Brownlee 26, Malonzo 18, Thompson 14, Standhardinger 14, J. Aguilar 13, Pringle 6, Tenorio 5, Gray 3, Mariano 3, Pessumal 1, Pinto 0.

Magnolia 97 – Lee 22, Rakocevic 21, Sangalang 13, Ahanmisi 11, Jalalon 11, Abueva 6, Barroca 5, Dionisio 3, Reavis 2, Dela Rosa 2, Wong 1.

San Miguel 124 – Scott 26, Lassiter 22, Manuel 22, Perez 16, Cruz 15, Perez 14, Herndon 6, Ross 3, Enciso 0, Brondial 0.

NLEX 116 – Clark 40, Chua 23, Trollano 21, Nieto 12, Alas 10, Fonacier 3, Miranda 3, Varilla 2, Ganuelas-Rosser 2, Rosales 0.

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