Brgy. Ginebra had the game under control in the early goings but lost its rhythm in the closing minutes of the match and eventually bowed to Magnolia, 102-92, Sunday in the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup restart at the Angeles University Foundation Sports Arena and Cultural Center in Angeles City, Pampanga.
The Gin Kings, who won their first four matches in convincing fashion, dropped to 4-1 while the Hotshots broke out of a 3-game slide to improve to 2-4.
Paul Lee started out slow but recovered just in the nick of time to help his team snap out of an 11-game losing streak against Brgy. Ginebra in the elimination round. The 31-year old native of Tondo, Manila converted key baskets during a telling 14-0 run which sealed the deal for the Hotshots.
“Yung three losses namin parang we feel na pwede kaming manalo, eh. I mean, in the last two, three minutes of the game parang nawawala yung mental toughness namin and that’s not our character,” said Magnolia head coach Chito Victolero during the post-game presser.
“Di iyon yung Magnolia Hotshots basketball character” added Victolero. “Ang problema lang naming ma-finish yung game. I’m very happy. Yesterday we talked and I challenged them na this is a real bounce back game na pwede naming gawin para makabalik kami sa liga, makabalik kami kung saan gusto naming pumunta.”
Stanley Pringle led the Gin Kings with 24 points while Japeth Aguilar and Scottie Thompson added 13 and 10 markers, respectively.
Brgy. Ginebra returns to action on Tuesday, October 27 against the third-running Rain or Shine Elasto Painters.
Magnolia 102 – Corpuz 20, Lee 15, Barroca 15, Sangalang 14, Dela Rosa 13, Banchero 10, Jalalon 9, Reavis 6, Melton 0, Calisaan 0, Abundo 0, Pascual 0, Saitanan 0, Dionisio 0.
Brgy. Ginebra 92 – Pringle 24, Aguilar 13, Thompson 10, Dillinger 9, Chan 9, Caperal 8, Tenorio 6, Tolentino 6, Mariano 4, Devance 3, Salado 0, Dela Cruz 0, R. Aguilar 0, Caguioa 0.
Quarterscores: 25-25, 52-54, 78-77, 102-92.