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Ginebra inches closer to top seed after beating Phoenix


By Ivan Saldajeno

ANTIPOLO--Ginebra moved nearer to the top spot in the PBA Governors' Cup after repulsing Phoenix's late run to take a 96-87 win at the Ynares Center on Wednesday night.

Up by as much as 21 points, the Gin Kings saw the Fuel Masters rallying late in the fourth quarter to as close as five, the last at 87-92 with 1:47 left.

But an emphatic jam by Japeth Aguilar with 1:19 remaining helped seal the deal for Ginebra as the team can now steal the top seed from TNT with a win on Sunday.

Justin Brownlee led the Gin Kings with 28 points, nine rebounds, one assist, two steals, and one block.

Eugene Phelps had 24 points, 16 rebounds, five assists, and one block for the Fuel Masters, who failed to force a potential four-way tie for fourth at the end of the eliminations.

Box Scores:

Ginebra 96-Brownlee 28, Tenorio 15, Aguilar 12, Devance 12, Mercado 12, Mariano 6, Caguioa 4, Thompson 3, Cruz 2, Marcelo 2, Helterbrand 0

Phoenix 87-Phelps 24, Enciso 15, Urbiztondo 11, Buenafe 8, Wilson J. 8, Baguio 7, Lee 5, Intal 4, Miranda 2, Wilson W. 2, Cruz 1, Pennisi 0, Torres 0, Borboran 0

Quarterscores: 31-18, 59-40, 78-67, 96-87

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno