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Ginebra romps Meralco in Finals opener

By Ivan Saldajeno

LUCENA—Ginebra drew first blood in the PBA Governors' Cup Finals with a 102-87 win over Meralco at the Quezon Convention Center on Friday night.

The Barangay almost lost their double-digit lead in the third quarter but zoomed again in the fourth to go 1-0 up in the best-of-seven series

Ginebra tried to pull away in the first half, blitzing in the dying moments of the first quarter and in the early goings of the second to open a 40-23 lead.

Meralco inched closer in the third, drawing to within four, 71-75, late in the period.

But the Barangay opened the fourth quarter with a 19-4 run to seal the mauling.

Justin Brownlee dropped 32 points, 19 rebounds, six assists, and one steal for Ginebra, which can go 2-0 up on Sunday night as the series moves to Quezon City.

Japeth Aguilar added 15 points, four boards, and three blocks, while Greg Slaughter tallied 14 markers, eight caroms, and two swats in his PBA Finals debut.

Allen Durham made 27 points, 14 rebounds, seven assists, two steals, and one block for Meralco.

Box Scores:

Ginebra 102-Brownlee 32, J. Aguilar 15, Slaughter 14, Ferrer 11, Tenorio 10, Devance 9, Mercado 7, Thompson 2, Caguioa 2, Taha 0, R. Aguilar 0, Mariano 0

Meralco 87-Durham 27, Amer 14, Tolomia 10, Hodge 8, De Ocampo 8, Dillinger 6, Newsome 6, Lanete 6, Hugnatan 2, Caram 0

Quarterscores: 29-18, 49-35, 77-71, 102-87

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