Ginebra wins Game Five, takes 3-2 lead in PBA Finals

Barangay Ginebra San Miguel Kings held off the Meralco Bolts, 92-81, in Game Five to take a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven finals showdown for the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Governors Cup crown in front of more than 22,000 spectators at the Smart Araneta Colisuem last Sunday night (October 16, Manila time).

Japeth Aguilar goes for the layup against the Meralco defense. (Photo courtesy: interaksyon.com)

Japeth Aguilar goes for the layup against the Meralco defense. (Photo courtesy: interaksyon.com)

Three-point baskets down the stretch by Sol Mercado and Scottie Thompson weathered the attempted rally of the Bolts and helped Ginebra win back-to-back games for the first time in the series.

The Kings can win the crown on October 19, Wednesday night.  This can be their first crown since the 2008 Commissioners Cup.

Ginebra went into a blazing start, going up as high as 21 points and maintained up until the Bolts made a furious rally to cut the lead to five just before Mercado banked in a three-pointer in the left wing with only 2:09 left in the game.

Meralco refused to go down as Chris Newsome cuts the lead down to six with a layup.

In the ensuing play, a travelling non-call on Sol Mercado resulted in a trey by Thompson, creating space to up the lead to nine with 44 seconds left.

Justin Brownlee paced the victors with 29 points while Japeth Aguilar scored 16 markers and hauled down eight rebounds withstanding the sprained ankle that he suffered late in Game Four.

Bolts’ reinforcement Allen Durham led the team with 20 points, 18 caroms and six assists and was instrumental in Meralco’s run.

Reynel Hugnatan added 17 points in a losing effort.

 

The scores:

GINEBRA 92 – Brownlee 29, Aguilar 16, Devance 11, Caguioa 8, Mercado 8, Tenorio 7, Thompson 5, Cruz 2.

MERALCO 81 – Durham 20, Hugnatan 17, Hodge 10, Newsome 10, Alapag 8, Uyloan 6, Al-Hussaini 4, Amer 4, Nabong 2, Caram 0, Faundo 0.

Quarterscores: 33-19, 54-39, 73-59, 92-81.

 

Game highlights:

 

Aris Ignacio is from the Philippines and has always been a big fan of Philippine basketball. Aris’ follows the Philippine Basketball Association since the late 80’s and has learned the history and personalities of the PBA. He also has interest with other basketball tournaments in the Philippines and beyond most specifically college basketball (UAAP, NCAA), the Asian Basketball League (ABL), FIBA Asia and World Cup tournaments. Global Basketball is Aris’ second writing assignment besides Asia-basket.com. Follow Aris Ignacio on Twitter at aris_ignacio.

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