The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel Kings put an end to the NLEX Road Warriors’ unbeaten start to the Oppo PBA Governors’ Cup with a 110-97 win on Saturday at the Calasiao Sports Complex in Pangasinan.
NLEX was 4-0 to open the conference but that came to a screeching halt against a similarly streaking Ginebra squad, which has now won a third straight game to improve to 3-1.
Joe Devance scored 23 points to lead the Kings while import Justin Brownlee posted 22 points, 13 rebounds and six assists in a big effort.
LA Tenorio chipped in with 17 points – 14 in a crucial third quarter swing – and seven assists while Greg Slaughter contributed a double-double from off the bench with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Scottie Thompson finished with just five points but still made his presence felt with seven rebounds and 11 assists.
NLEX put up a great fight early in this one, leading by as many as 11 points, 39-28, in the second period.
But Devance and Kevin Ferrer knocked down back-to-back threes to spark a 16-2 Ginebra run that put them on top, 44-42, late in the first half.
The Kings would later rattle off six unanswered points that gave them a four-point lead before the Road Warriors got a heads-up play from Eman Monfort, who weaved through defenders before knocking down a tough, contested double-clutch jumper right at the buzzer.
Ginebra led, 50-48, at the half with Brownlee and Devance each contributing 14 points.
The Ginebra run was by no means over, though, as they remained red-hot after the break. Japeth Aguilar started off scoring with a dunk as the Kings scored six unanswered points to open the period.
Tenorio later took over for the team, knocking down three three-pointers and spearheading a 13-0 run that made it a whopping 20-point lead, 86-66, late in the third.
NLEX tried to battle back in the fourth – at one point going on an 8-0 run behind back-to-back treys from Larry Fonacier and a tip-in by import Aaron Fuller – but could not get any closer than 13 points.
Fuller finished with 20 points and 17 rebounds for the Road Warriors. Four other players reached double figures but none scored more than 12 markers.