Barangay Ginebra San Miguel continued their strong start in the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup after notching their fourth straight victory by blowing past the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters, 86-71, Wednesday at the Angeles University Foundation Sports Arena.
Stanley Pringle led the way for Ginebra with 20 points followed by Prince Caperal who had an all-around game of 14 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists. Both players also knocked down four shots from beyond the arc.
The Gin Kings led by as many as 21 points after Japeth Aguilar converted on back-to-back and1 opportunities to make it 86-65 with under three minutes remaining. Aguilar finished with 13 points and five rebounds in 24 minutes as Ginebra continues to push its big man into game shape.
Ginebra shot 47 percent from the field, including 12-for-28 from downtown while limiting the potent Phoenix offense to just 37 percent. After the game, Ginebra head coach Tim Cone credited his team's defense but mentioned that they were fortunate Phoenix was coming off a tough game.
"Obviously we played really good defense. I thought we played really well against Matthew Wright especially but we got an assist from Talk 'N Text," said Cone. "Right now Phoenix is going through a real murderous time in their schedule. You had to play Talk 'N Text who plays with tremendous pace - up and down, up and down, and then you have to turn it around a day and a half later and play us."
Phoenix was coming off a 19-point defeat at the hands of TNT Tropang Giga and Ginebra was more than ready to capitalize on its hapless foe.
Jason Perkins muscled his way to 15 points and eight rebounds for the Fuel Masters. But Wright, who came in as the league top scorer averaging 30.0 per game after three games, settled for just 12 points on a woeful 5-for-17 shooting clip.
"We had an extra day off. We weren't playing Talk 'N Text. So as much as I like our defense tonight, I have to give an assist for Talk 'N Text for wearing them out. But we'll take it," said Cone.
"Every team is gonna have their murderous part of their schedule. We're gonna have ours. And Talk 'N Text will have theirs. Everybody's gonna have that time. Right now Phoenix is going through theirs. We got them at a good time, a really good time. We were lucky," he added.
Ginebra rises to a perfect 4-0 record while Phoenix has now lost back-to-back games after winning its first two, settling for a 2-2 card.
GINEBRA 86- Pringle 20, Caperal 14, Aguilar 13, Thompson 11, J. Tenorio 9, Devance 8, Tolentino 5, Mariano 4, Dillinger 2, Chan 0
PHOENIX 71 - Perkins 15, Wright 12, Chua 11, Intal 9, Heruela 7, Garcia 5, Jazul 5, Rios 3, Marcelo 2, Napoles 2, Reyes 0
-Jason Perkins entered Wednesday's game carrying a 92 percent free throw average but only shot 1-for-3 versus Ginerba.
-Ginebra's 4-0 start matches its best start since 1986 when the franchise won its first-ever title according to PBA chief statistician Fidel Mangonon.
Phoenix vs Magnolia Hotshots, 6:45 p.m. on Oct 23
Ginebra vs Magnolia Hotshots, 6:45 p.m. on Oct. 25.