Blackwater Elite 103 – San Miguel Beermen 100
The Blackwater Elite came back from a double-digit deficit in the third quarter to shock the San Miguel Beermen. The fourth quarter run to steal the win was led by Mike DiGregorio and Henry Walker. DiGregorio finished with 21 points and five treys while Walker led all scorers 35 points.
After a nip-and-tuck first half, the Beermen tried to shake the Elite with a strong showing in the third period. Alex Cabagnot came out firing in the second half. He scored six straight points after the Elite got to within four points to put the Beermen up by seven points. Christian Standhardinger joined in midway through the quarter with a scoring blitz of his own to keep San Miguel ahead. Kelly Nabong’s trey and Cabagnot’s free throw gave San Miguel a brief 10-point lead before settling for an eight-point spread heading into the final period.
The Elite made their run early in the fourth period. Walker and Paul Zamar got the run started with hits from outside. Walker added a dunk and Zamar got in a trey to further cut the lead. JP Erram’s jumper with eight minutes left in the game gave Blackwater the lead back. The Beermen and Elite traded baskets and leads midway through the final period before outside shots by DiGregorio and Walker gave them a six-point lead. Lassiter hit a trey to cut the Elite lead down to just one point, but Erram nailed two clucth free throws to seal the win for Blackwater.
Barangay Ginebra 104 – NorthPort Batang Pier 98
Barangay Ginebra got big games from Japeth Aguilar and Justin Brownlee to overcome the return of Stanley Pringle to the NorthPort Batang Pier. Ginebra stays spotless with three straight wins to open their Governor’s Cup Title Defense.
Ginebra started the game strong. They furiously attacked the paint and dominated the game with their size. The Barangay jumped out to a 7-0 lead and built a double-digit lead off a Brownlee dunk. Ginebra limited the Batang Pier to just 10 points in the first nine minutes of the ball game. They jumped out to an 18-point first quarter lead and held on to a sizeable margin heading into the break.
Pringle, fresh from a stint with the Philippine Team, sent a statement in his first game. He scored 34 points and dished seven assists to lead the Batang Pier. Rashad Woods backed him up with 28 points and 11 rebounds. The two were responsible for keeping the game close in the second half. The two teamed up to cut Ginebra’s lead down to just one point midway through the fourth period.
Brownlee and Aguilar came up big in the final minutes of the game to save the Barangay. Brownlee hit a huge jumper to increase Ginebra’s lead and stop the NorthPort run. Aguilar then scored six straight points inside the final two minutes to keep the Batang Pier at bay. His jumper with 26 seconds left proved to be the dagger to seal the win for the Barangay.
Photo from PBA.ph