Ginebra holds off SMB's late charge
MANILA, Philippines – Barangay Ginebra nearly squandered a 21-point lead before outlasting San Miguel Beer in the final stretch for a 105-98 win in the PBA Governors' Cup on Wednesday night.
Zacchaeus Mason scored 26 of his 30 points in the second half, while Greg Slaughter battled June Mar Fajardo for 19 points to propel the Gin Kings to a 3-way tie with league-leaders San Mig Coffee and Talk ‘N Text.
Determined to bounce back from their 117-108 loss to Rain or Shine, Ginebra erected a 21-point lead, 65-86, with a strong showing in the third canto.
But the Beermen, led by import Reggie Williams, pulled within 95-99 midway the payoff period.
The Kings were able to hold off San Miguel by making the most of their trips to the free-throw line in the last 3 minutes.
Mason connected in 9 of his 10 attempts from the free-throw area, which allowed Brangay Ginebra to escape with its 5th win in 7 starts.
“We made up for the fall in the last game by stepping up in this game,” said Ginebra coach Jeff Cariaso in the PBA website.
“It’s part of the learning curve where we are now. I really challenged the guys to focus our minds on the task at hand after losing to Rain or Shine,” Cariaso added.
The Beermen, which got 37 point from Williams, fell to their 4th loss in 8 games.
Ginebra 105 – Mason 30, Slaughter 19, Tenorio 16, Aguilar 15, Baracael 7, Ellis 6, Caguioa 6, Helterbrand 4, Mamaril 2, Monfort 0.
San Miguel Beer 98 – Williams 37, Fajardo 23, Mercado 14, Santos 8, Tubid 7, Lutz 6, Maierhofer 2, Kramer 1, Duncil 0, Lassiter 0, Chua 0.
Quarterscores: 25-16, 49-41, 84-65, 105-98