PBA: Japeth makes clutch block as Ginebra takes down no. 1 Phoenix
Paul Lintag on Mar 10, 2019 09:21 PM
Down one, Matthew Wright found Calvin Abueva wide open for what would have been a go-ahead layup but Japeth Aguilar met the Beast at the apex for a clutch block.
Japeth Aguilar’s long limbs proved to be useful for the barangay.
Aguilar made the defensive play of the game Sunday and Ginebra survived no. 1 Phoenix in a PBA Philippine Cup thriller, taking a big 100-97 win at the Big Dome.
Down one, Matthew Wright found Calvin Abueva wide open for what would have been a go-ahead layup but Aguilar met the Beast at the apex for a clutch block.
As the Gin Kings took a three-point lead at the foul line, the Fuel Masters went the length of the court in the final four seconds and Wright launched a desparation attempt for overtime.
His triple went in-and-out and the Gin Kings managed to hold on for the victory.
“We showed great character all game long,” head coach Tim Cone said.
“This were not going for us, [but] we just kept at it,” he added.
True enough, Phoenix was in control for most of the game, even taking multiple 10-point leads.
But the Gin Kings would prove to be stubborn, eventually turning the game into an exciting back-and-forth late in the fourth quarter.
There, Ginebra’s superior championship experience prevailed, coming up with key plays on both ends to secure the win, improving to 4-3.
LA Tenorio, who tied the PBA record for most consecutive gaems played at 596, led Ginebra with 23 points, eight rebounds and five assists.
Aljon Mariano scored 20 in a starting role. Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar finished with 18 and 11 points respectively.
Despite the loss, Phoenix kept no. 1 with an 8-2 mark.
Six players scored in double figures for the Fuel Masters led by Calvin Abueva with 15 points on top of 11 rebounds.
GINEBRA (100) - Tenorio 23, Mariano 20, Slaughter 18, Chan 13, Aguilar 11, Thompson 5, dela cruz 4, Cruz 4, Mercado 2, Caperal 0, Ferrer 0.
PHOENIX (97) - Abueva 15, Kramer 14, Jazul 13, Chua 13, Marcelo 10, Wright 10, Perkins 9, Mallari 9, Revilla 2, Mendoza 2.
Quarters: 18-24, 40-26, 72-76, 100-97.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8