Ginebra zooms to Top 5 after downing ROS in triple OT thriller

Ginebra zooms to Top 5 after downing ROS in triple OT thriller

Japeth Aguilar played through back pain to lead Ginebra in a three-hour showdown. PBA Media Bureau
By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY--Ginebra turned back Rain Or Shine, 100-92, on Friday night in a game that went to triple overtime.

You read it right.

In the final match of the elimination round of the PBA Philippine Cup that lasted for 63 basketball minutes--and a little over three hours in real time--the Barangay survived a sluggish performance late in the fourth quarter and for most of the extended overtime to barge into the Top 6.

Ginebra was up, 80-73, with 3:26 to go in regulation when Beau Belga took over for ROS with five of his team's last seven points, the other two coming from Ed Daquioag, to eventually force the first overtime at 80-all.

Both teams struggled for most of the free basketball session, although the Elasto Painters had a huge chance at taking the win in the second overtime period with Raymond Almazan skying high for an alley-oop attempt that he missed as time expired.

It turned out to spell doom for them as the Barangay closed the game on an 8-0 run to seal the win.

Japeth Aguilar, who played through a back injury, made 30 points, 17 rebounds, five assists, and one block in 51 minutes of play for Ginebra, which will interestingly meet ROS again on Monday night at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay as they kick off their best-of-three quarterfinal series.

LA Tenorio, despite turning the ball over eight times, contributed 20 points, six rebounds, one assist, and two steals in almost 57 minutes of play, the fourth most all-time among locals and the fourth most among Ginebra players.

Joe Devance also had a double-double of 15 markers and 13 boards with seven dimes, two blocks, and one steal even as Scottie Thompson made his own double-double of 10 points, 17 rebounds, three assists, and one swipe.

Belga finished with 17 points, six rebounds, and five assists for ROS.

In effect, NLEX will face Alaska in the other best-of-three series, while GlobalPort, which lost to Phoenix earlier Friday, ends up in a quarterfinal showdown against Magnolia with the latter holding a once-to-win, twice-to-beat advantage.

Phoenix will then face TNT in a do-or-die showdown on Sunday night also at "The Big Dome" for the right to face top-seeded San Miguel, also armed with the playoff bonus, in the other Elite 8 match-up.

Blackwater got the last boot due to having the lowest quotient among the four teams tied at 5-6.

Box Scores:

Ginebra 100-J. Aguilar 30, Tenorio 20, Devance 15, Mercado 10, Thompson 10, Cruz 6, Caguioa 3, Ferrer 3, Mariano 3, R. Aguilar 0

Rain Or Shine 92-Belga 17, Norwood 13, Daquioag 11, Ahanmisi 11, Washington 9, Trollano 8, Almazan 8, Borboran 6, Ponferada 4, Nambatac 3, Maiquez 2, Matias 0

Quarterscores: 26-20, 45-34, 67-62, 80-80, 85-85, 87-87, 100-92

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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