STA. ROSA, Laguna -- Ginebra rolled to its fourth straight victory after turning back Meralco, 111-105, in the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup on Sunday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Sports Complex here.
Japeth Aguilar and Justin Brownlee led the Gin Kings in registering a league-leading 7-1 win-loss record while adding to the misery of the Bolts.
The Bolts slumped to their fifth straight defeat for a 1-5 record.
Aguilar wound up with 31 points, seven rebounds, and two assists while making four points in the crucial stretch as the Gin Kings secured a slot in the playoffs.
His putback dunk off Brownlee's miss restored order for the Gin Kings after the Bolts sparked a 7-0 run to trim the gap to seven points. Another basket by Aguilar gave the Gin Kings a 106-97 lead.
"I'm just trying to play my role," said Aguilar after the match.
Brownlee, on the other hand, also fired 31 markers, hauled down seven rebounds, issued six assists, and blocked three shots.
LA Tenorio churned out 18 markers, including the last four free throws that shut the door on the gritty Meralco side that trimmed the gap to four points on Allen Durham's quick two in the dying seconds, 109-105.
Durham paced the Bolts with 36 points, 16 rebounds, and nine assists. He tried to will his team back in the final stretch but the Gin Kings hung tough for the victory.
Chris Newsome had 25 points, six rebounds, and six assists. KG Canaleta and Cliff Hodge had 11 and 10 markers, respectively.
Ginebra 111 - Brownlee 31, Aguilar 31, Tenorio 18, Caperal 8, Thompson 8, Chan 6, Ferrer 4, Mariano 3, Caguioa 2.
Meralco 105 - Durham 36, Newsome 25, Canaleta 11, Salva 11, Hodge 10, Amer 6, Caram 2, Hugnatan 2, Bono 2, Lanete 0, Jamito 0, Tolomia 0.
Quarterscores: 23-24, 46-48, 75-72, 111-105.
- On the same venue last May, Justin Brownlee led Alab Pilipinas to an ABL championship. Alab beat Mono Vampire in a thrilling best-of-five finale.
- Ginebra almost played a seamless game, committing a turnover only eight times the whole game.
Ginebra - vs Rain or Shine on October 13 at the Quezon Convention Center
Meralco - vs NorthPort on October 12 at the Mall of Asia Arena