Ginebra rolls to their fourth straight win, Rain or Shine secures the top spot

Rain or Shine Elasto Painters 106 – Meralco Bolts 99

The Rain or Shine Elasto Painters nearly blew an huge lead. They were able to regain their bearings in the extra period to beat the Meralco Bolts and secure the No. 1 spot in the standings. Reggie Johnson had another big game with 21 points and 18 rebounds. Maverick Ahanmisi scored 20 points, grabbed eight boards and dished out six assists. Chris Tiu scored 13 points and dished out five assists off the bench.

The Elasto Painters relied on a total team effort where nine players scored nine points or more to build their huge lead. Ahanmisi, Tiu and Gabe Norwood opened the third quarter with a flurry of points to increase Rain or Shine’s lead to 18, their biggest of the game. But it didn’t take the Bolts too long to fight back. Baser Amer aggressively attacked the paint as he scored 11 points on 19-2 run to pull Meralco back into the game. The Bolts tied the score at 80 near the end of the quarter to turn the game into a nail-biter.

In the final period, Tiu and Amer traded baskets in the closing minutes to tie the score at 96. Both team couldn’t capitalize on their final possessions, sending the game into OT. Reggie Johnson came alive in the final five minutes. He opened OT with a three-pointer and then nailed two free throws to give Rain or Shine a three-point lead. To make matters worse, Newsome was slapped with an unsportsmanlike foul. That resulted in a free throw by Tiu and a trey by Ed Daquiaog to seal the win.

Barangay Ginebra 105 – Alaska Aces 86

Barangay Ginebra continues to climb up the playoff ladder after falling off with a 1-5 start. they win their fourth straight game and pull to .500 at 5-5 to tie for the sixth spot. They take down the Alaska Aces easily with a strong defensive performance.

Unlike their previous games, it was the Barangay that got the fast start in the game. They were able to build a 14-point lead after the first period. Ginebra executed on both ends, exploding for 30 points and limiting Alaska to only 16 points. After the Aces pulled to within three midway through the first period, Ginebra got out to a 12-2 run to take their big lead. The run was capped by back-to-back triples from Kevin Ferrer and Joe Devance.

Ginebra continued to pour on the points as the starters teamed up in the second quarter to increase the lead to 25 off a Justin Brownlee layup. In the third period, Ginebra raised the lead to as much as 13 points as Jeff Chan scored on a basket inside and LA Tenorio buried a freebie. Alaska would only get to as close 21 points in the fourth period before the final count.

Brownlee led the way with a near triple-double of 28 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. Tenorio and Japeth Aguilar combine for 22 points as Ginebra got production from almost everyone on the team. The Barangay hit 11 treys at a 39% clip. They also assisted on 28 of their 38 made field goals.