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Ginebra stifles TNT in OT to take finals opener

Japeth Aguilar imposed his will inside the shaded lane. PBA Images
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Ginebra clamped TNT for almost the entire overtime period to seal a 100-94 win to begin the PBA Finals on Sunday night at the Angeles University Foundation Sports and Cultural Center.

After Arvin Tolentino converted a wide open layup with five seconds left in regulation to eventually force overtime, his fellow Barangay Ginebra teammates held the Tropang Giga to just two points in extra time, a floater from RR Pogoy with 1:20 left, even as Aljon Mariano and Japeth Aguilar scored dagger baskets both off LA Tenorio's feeds to seal the win.

Aguilar finished with 25 points, 16 rebounds, one assist, and one block for Ginebra, which drew first blood in the best-of-seven series.

Stanley Pringle added 24 points, seven rebounds, seven assists, and two steals.

Tenorio, who dished off the assist to Tolentino for the equalizer near the end of regulation, had his own double-double of 12 points and 10 assists with five rebounds.

TNT actually had a chance to counter Tolentino's heroics, but Jayson Castro misfired an open floater after getting past Tenorio's defense.

Ray-Ray Parks finished with 20 points, four rebounds, four assists, five steals, and two blocks for TNT, but he fouled out with 31 seconds left while trying to steal the ball from Tenorio.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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