Japeth to the rescue as Ginebra stays unscathed vs NorthPort
MANILA, Philippines – Barangay Ginebra arrested a massive meltdown to escape with a 104-98 win over NorthPort and remain unscathed in the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup at the Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday, September 5.
Japeth Aguilar hit timely buckets down the stretch to finish with 23 points and 9 rebounds as the Gin Kings clinched their third straight win and kept the Batang Pier winless in four outings.
Leading by as much as 19 points, Ginebra saw NorthPort narrow the gap to three points with a little over a minute left, 97-100, before Aguilar played the hero with two clutch shots en route to the triumph.
Import Justin Brownlee was his usual self with 27 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists and 2 blocks as he helped the Gin Kings build a comfortable 60-41 cushion early in the third frame.
But Batang Pier, who had stars Stanley Pringle and Sean Anthony playing in their first game back, slowly stormed their way back into the game and trimmed their deficit to as close as one point, 89-90, midway through the fourth period.
Pringle, who returned from the Asian Games, finished with 34 points – including 19 in the third – to go with 7 assists and 5 rebounds and 3 steals but those weren't enough for NorthPort to crack the winning column.
LA Tenorio chalked up 18 points and 5 steals, Greg Slaughter chipped in 18 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocks while Scottie Thompson added a game-high 14 rebounds on top of 6 assists, 4 points and 2 steals in the win.
Batang Pier reinforcement Rashaw Wood had 28 points, 11 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals while Anthony churned out 9 points, 5 assists and 3 steals in his return from an injury.
Ginebra 104 - Brownlee 27, Aguilar J 23, Slaughter 18, Tenorio 18, Ferrer 6, Mariano 4, Thompson 4, Chan 2, Caguioa 2.
NorthPort 98 - Pringle 34, Woods 28, Tautuaa 11, Anthony 9, Taha 6, Fortuna 5, Guinto 3, Grey 2, Arana 0, Espinas 0, Gabayni 0.
Quarters: 33-15, 57-41, 79-73, 104-98.