They just outplayed us tonight -- Ginebra's Justin Brownlee on Game 3 loss
Mark Escarlote on Oct 18, 2017 11:10 PM
A mental lapse was all it took for Ginebra to crumble in Game 3 of the PBA Governors' Cup Finals.
Game 3 started to fall apart for Barangay Ginebra when Japeth Aguilar was called for a technical foul with just five minutes left, and the match tied at 77.
That proved to be the window Meralco needed to avoid falling to a deeper hole in the PBA Governors’ Cup best-of-seven Finals series.
Aguilar had a mental lapse during crunch time and the Bolts capitalized on it to spark a decisive run and walk out of the Big Dome with a 94-81 win.
The Gin Kings still hold a 2-1 series advantage, but the momentum may have shifted to the Bolts’ side especially with how Meralco outhustled the Ginebra in the last five minutes of the ball game.
“They just outplayed us tonight,” said Gin Kings import Justin Brownlee, who had only five of his 15 points in the fourth period.
“Maybe we didn’t get our ball movement like we usually do in the past couple of games,” he added. “I just give a lot of credit to Meralco, they had a great game, great game plan, they executed very well and some of the players that haven’t been playing for them, they stepped up big. They stepped up and played great tonight so you know I tip my hat off.”
Allen Durham had a monster game with 38 points on a 15-of-29 field goal clip for the Bolts, who lost forward Ranidel De Ocampo early in the opening period to a strained left calf muscle. Durham hauled in 20 rebounds, had five blocks, four assists and a couple of steals to lead Meralco’s fight back.
“(I’m) not really surprised (with Durham’s performance). It was almost a have to win type of situation for him,” said Brownlee. “I’m sure they don’t want to go 3-0. We knew they’re going to be aggressive, they’re going to fight the whole game. It wasn’t a surprise.”
“He’s a tough player especially down low,” he added. “He can get the ball down low, get the rebound and stuff like that so it actually wasn’t a surprise.”
Aguilar put Ginebra up, 77-75 on a completed three-point play with 6:04 remaining but that was the last time the Gin Kings held the driver's seat, as they watch Durham and the Bolts mount a comeback.
Durham drilled a jumper to tie the match.
Aguilar was whistled with a technical foul for disrespectfully addressing the referee as Garvo Lanete sank the technical freethrow followed by a Durham layup that sparked an 11-0 run for an 86-77 lead with just 2:47 left. Another dagger three by Jared Dillinger put the game away, 91-80, in the last 1:25.
Game 4 is on Friday.
“I think we have to find a way to probably slow Allen Durham down. He had a big night. If he continues to have a big night for them it’s gonna be a lot of trouble for us,” said Brownlee. “So I think that’s one of the thing that we’re gonna try to do and try to get back on the basic principles and fundamentals, moving the ball, screening and cutting and hopefully it will work out for us.”
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