Stanley Pringle drained two clutch three-pointers to help Brgy. Ginebra repel a stubborn Bay Area side, 101-91, in Game 5 of the best-of-seven championship series in the PBA Season 47 Commissioner’s Cup, Sunday at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
The 35-year-old Fil-Am scattered 20 points in the pivotal match highlighted by back-to-back clutch treys which turned a precarious 5-point lead into a more comfortable 11-point edge, 97-86, with just 1:32 left on the game clock.
The victory gave the Gin Kings a 3-2 advantage in the Finals duel and can win it all on Game 6 which is scheduled on Wednesday, January 11, 5:45pm at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“Well, he’s not 100-percent yet, as everyone can tell. He’s still working his way back, but his 90-percent is better than most guys in the league,” said Brgy. Ginebra head coach Tim Cone on Pringle.
“He’s definitely a weapon out there, and he’s a weapon that really, Bay Area has not seen, really. Because he hasn’t been playing heavy, heavy minutes, and they don’t know the history of Stanley a year ago or two years ago or three years ago,” he added.
The Dragons played without their import Andrew Nicholson for the second straight game and the 33-year-old Canadian was joined in the sidelines by starting guard Glen Yang who was also nursing an ankle injury.
“It’s a tough group, it really is. They’re really well-coached and disciplined. When we get leads, they don’t panic, and that’s been the hard part for us. They don’t panic when we get leads. We had to keep earning it and earning it,” said Cone on the guest team.
Justin Brownlee paced the 2018 Commissioner’s Cup champs with 37 points on 14-of-22 shooting with 5-of-8 coming from beyond the arc. The recently crowned Best Import also added 8 boards, 2 assists, 3 steals and 4 rejections to his tally. Japeth Aguilar added 12 points while LA Tenorio contributed 8. Jamie Malonzo and Scottie Thompson chipped in 7 markers each.
Brgy. Ginebra 101 – Brownlee 37, Pringle 20, J.Aguilar 12, Tenorio 8, Malonzo 7, Thompson 7, Standhardinger 5, Pinto 3, Gray 2, Mariano 0.
Bay Area 91 – Blankley 29, Lam 16, Zheng 15, Liu 10, Ewing 9, Song 5, Reid 2, Ju 2.
Quarterscores: 23-24, 54-43, 76-62, 101-91.