MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE) Justin Brownlee netted a new career-high of 50 points, and the Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings needed every single one of them to battle past Columbian Dyip in overtime, 127-123, in the 2019 PBA Commissioner's Cup on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum.
He scored nine points in the overtime period, including the go-ahead jump shot with 31.4 ticks left, before LA Tenorio iced the game at the free throw line.
The Gin Kings finished the elimination round with a 7-4 win-loss record. The result had no bearing on their playoff seeding as they were going to be the fourth seed regardless, after Blackwater's win earlier in the evening.
Yet as Ginebra coach Tim Cone said, "That might be the best non-bearing game in PBA history."
"Neither team wanted to give in. We wanted to create momentum going to playoffs," he added. "Whether we won or lost, we were going to be the fourth seed… but we really wanted to just try to continue our momentum."
Brownlee made 20 of his 37 shots for 50 points, while adding 14 rebounds, 5 assists, 4 steals, and 4 blocks. Stanley Pringle had 16 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists, and sent the game to overtime with the running floater with 1.2 seconds left in regulation. Japeth Aguilar added 20 points and 8 boards.
LA Tenorio had 15 points, while Scottie Thompson did a little bit of everything with 12 points, 9 rebounds, and 8 assists.
"We played as hard as we possibly could, and barely beat them on a couple of Justin Brownlee tough shots," said Cone. "Hats off to them, and hats off to our players for battling and playing."
Columbian Dyip had a chance to beat Ginebra for the first time in franchise history, as they had a 113-111 lead with just 11.8 seconds left off a split at the line by import Lester Prosper. They had several chances to clinch the win, but Ginebra forced a jump ball with 7 seconds left, and Brownlee gained possession against Rashawn McCarthy.
That led to Pringle's game-tying shot, sending the game to overtime.
The Dyip struck first in the extra period, with McCarthy's and-1 putting them up 116-113. But the Gin Kings soon pulled ahead, 120-118, off a Greg Slaughter bucket before CJ Perez knotted the count again with a difficult putback. A booming triple by Brownlee shifted the lead back to Ginebra, only for Prosper to answer with a three-pointer of his own.
"That whole team is a team of big-shot makers," Cone said of Columbian Dyip. "Every time we make a little bit of a run, they come down and make a big shot."
No shot was bigger than Brownlee's jumper over Perez's outstretched arms, however, that gave Ginebra the lead for good and gave the celebrated import a new PBA career-high. Columbian Dyip still had a chance, but Prosper could not convert a lay-up after he was bothered by Brownlee and Japeth Aguilar.
"We really need a game like this to help us prepare (for the playoffs)," Cone said.
Prosper nearly matched Brownlee, putting up 45 points and 18 rebounds, while Perez finished with 20 points and McCarthy added 14 points, 11 assists, and 8 rebounds.
However, Columbian's drought against Ginebra continues. The Gin Kings remain the only team they have yet to beat since entering the PBA. The Dyip finished the conference with a 3-8 win-loss record.
Ginebra 127 - Brownlee 50, Aguilar 20, Pringle 16, Tenorio 15, Thompson 12, Slaughter 9, Devance 3, Mariano 2, Caguioa 0.
Columbian 123 - Prosper 45, Perez 20, Khobuntin 17, McCarthy 14, Cahilig 11, Escoto 9, Celda 4, Camson 3, Reyes 0, King, Faundo 0.
Quarter scores: 23-33, 55-51, 85-82, 113-113, 127-123
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