Blackwater survives late Ginebra scare in preseason match

By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Blackwater nearly blew a late 16-point edge but held on to a 103-100 win against Ginebra in the last game of the PBA Liga ng Bayan preseason series at the Batangas City Sports Center in Batangas City on Sunday night.

The Elite led by 16, 97-81, with 3:40 left in the game, but the Barangay came to within three, 98-101, with 10.6 remaining capped by back-to-back triples from Nico Salva.

Ronjay Buenafe sank two free throws with 9.1 seconds to go to give Blackwater a 103-98 cushion.

Paolo Taha scored on an undergoal stab to cut the lead back to three, but that turned out to be the last two points of the game.

Arth Dela Cruz and James Forrester each had 16 points, while Mac Belo added 15 for the Elite, who got a timely boost with exactly a week to go before the start of the regular season.

Japeth Aguilar led the Barangay with 14 markers.

Box Scores:

Blackwater 103-Dela Cruz 16, Forrester 16, Belo 15, Pascual 12, Miranda 10, Buenafe 8, Aguilar 7, Pinto 5, Gamalinda 5, Banal 5, Sena 2, Melano 2, Sumang 0

Ginebra 100-Aguilar 14, Mercado 12, Salva 11, Taha 10, Devance 10, Thompson 8, Mariano 8, Cruz 8, Jamito 6, Ellis 5, Helterbrand 5, Tenorio 2, Ferrer 1, Marcelo 0, De Guzman 0

Quarterscores: 23-22, 55-50, 78-68, 103-100

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