PBA Commissioner’s Cup

Bishop solid vs NorthPort as streaking Ginebra boosts Top 4 chances

Delfin Dioquino

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Bishop solid vs NorthPort as streaking Ginebra boosts Top 4 chances

TOUGH SHOT. Scottie Thompson in action for Barangay Ginebra in the 2023-24 PBA Commissioner's Cup.

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Tony Bishop does it all as Barangay Ginebra claims its third straight win to stay in close contention for a twice-to-beat bonus in the quarterfinals

MANILA, Philippines – Tony Bishop shone on both ends and lifted Barangay Ginebra to a 103-93 win over NorthPort at the Araneta Coliseum on Sunday, January 7, as the top four race in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup intensifies.

Bishop turned in 26 points, 16 rebounds, 5 steals, and 2 blocks to propel the Gin Kings to their third consecutive victory, which enabled them to hike their record to 7-3 and stay in close contention for a playoff bonus.

Only league-leading Magnolia (9-2) has secured a twice-to-beat armor in the quarterfinals as Meralco (7-2), Phoenix (7-2), San Miguel (7-3), and Ginebra duke it out for the three remaining playoff incentives.

“We’re getting there,” said Gin Kings head coach Tim Cone when asked about his wards’ readiness for the quarterfinals.

“A lot of it depends whether you make the top four or the bottom four. We’re in the bottom four at this point still so we still have our work cut out for us.”

Jamie Malonzo delivered 16 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals, while Christian Standhardinger chimed in 16 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists in the triumph that saw Ginebra pull away only in the fourth quarter.

The Batang Pier were still within striking distance with 8:30 minutes left when Arvin Tolentino pulled them within 79-84 before the Gin Kings dropped a 12-0 bomb to blow the game wide open.

Japeth Aguilar scored 4 straight points to ignite the run as Bishop and Maverick Ahanmisi drained a pair of three-pointers that allowed Ginebra to prop up its biggest lead at 96-79.

Aguilar put up 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists, Ahanmisi tallied 13 points, 6 assists, and 4 rebounds, while Stanley Pringle added 10 points.

Former league MVP Scottie Thompson stuffed the stat sheet with 7 points, 10 assists, and 7 rebounds as the Gin Kings went on a winning streak since his return from a knee injury.

Arvin Tolentino torched his former team Ginebra with 27 points on top of 6 rebounds and 4 steals, although NorthPort simply ran out of steam after engaging the Gin Kings to a see-saw affair in the first three periods.

The first three quarters were marked by 6 ties and 18 lead changes before Ginebra seized the upper hand for good.

Venky Jois had 21 points, 17 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 blocks for the Batang Pier, who entered the playoffs with a 6-5 record having lost three of their last four games.

The Scores

Barangay Ginebra 103 – Bishop 26, Malonzo 16, Standhardinger 16, J.Aguilar 15, Ahanmisi 13, Pringle 10, Thompson 7, Tenorio 0, Pinto 0, Onwubere 0, Cu 0, Gumaru 0.

NorthPort 93 – Tolentino 27, Jois 21, Zamar 11, Calma 10, Yu 8, Munzon 6, Chan 5, Paraiso 5, Flores 0, Rosales 0, Amores 0, Adamos 0.

Quarter: 24-26, 50-50, 77-72, 103-93.

– Rappler.com

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.