Caguioa's clutch triples help Ginebra hold off San Mig

Once again, Mark Caguioa delivers the killer blows for Barangay Ginebra.

With their captain rising to the ocassion, the Gin Kings hung tough and clinched a morale-boosting 96-88 victory over the Mixers to get back on track in the PBA Commissioners Cup before another capacity crowd at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

ALSO READ: Balkman: I'm not a bad guy

Reeling from a 96-93 defeat inflicted by Rain or Shine last Sunday, Ginebra immediately imposed its will on the defensive end then showed steely nerves in the face of San Mig Coffee’s last-ditch uprising.

Caguioa tallied 25 points, eight coming in the stretch and highlighted by back-to-back treys, while import Vernon Macklin added 20 markers and 16 rebounds as the Gin Kings moved out of the cellar with a 2-5 record, tying Air21 in the process.

The Mixers, who got 25 points and 16 rebounds from reigning Best Import awardee Denzel Bowles, saw their three-game winning streak came to a halt while dropping to 3-4 alongside idle Barako Bull.

Although he took the backseat anew offensively with just 12 points, heady guard LA Tenorio flourished with his playmaking abilities, collecting 13 assists–repeatedly feeding Caguioa and Macklin.

Also coming up for the Gin Kings were center Billy Mamaril, who had 13 points while stymieing the 6-foot-10 Bowles, and athletic forward Chris Ellis, who had 11 points.

The team’s suffocating defense, which held the streaking Mixers to just 34-of-88 (38.6 percent) shooting from the field, clearly made the big difference, along with Caguioa’s clutch hits in the crunch.

ALSO READ: Two coaches say Balkman should go

“Kailangan talaga naming manalo. Kaya nag-sacrifice muna kami sa opensa. As a whole team, nagtulong-tulong kami and nag-commit talaga kami na dumepensa. Alam namin na pahihirapan kami ng SanMig kaya dapat pahirapan rin namin sila,” stated the 5-foot-8 Tenorio.

For coach Alfrancis Chua, the win will surely serve the Gin Kings in good stead.

“It’s nice to beat the champion team. They’re a very strong team–taller, bigger than us. But the thing is, we played with a (big) heart tonight. Malaki-laking isda itong nahuli namin and I’m giving it to the boys. Sinabi ko sa kanila before the game iyong kalaban natin SMC then look at their height but I believe on them na mas mas malaki ang puso nila kesa sa kalaban,” he added.

After a dominant first half where they enjoyed a big 48-35 cushion, the Gin Kings momentarily cooled off in the third as Bowles started to get himself going with 14 points, helping the Mixers closed in on at 58-67 into the fourth.

Ginebra, however, uncorked a 12-6 run–capped by a Caguioa floater–that restored its lead to 79-64 midway in the fourth, sending the relatively pro-Gin Kings crowd of 16,617 on their feet.

Refusing to quit, San Mig Coffee still made it an interesting game as James Yap completed a three-point play, cutting their deficit to just 77-82 with 1:37 left.

Caguioa then played the role of a cold-blooded assassin to the hilt, unleashing back-to-back triples that put Ginebra comfortably ahead 88-79, time down to just 46.8 ticks.

Three triples–two by Yap and the last by Joe Devance–kept the Mixers’ flickering hopes alive, but time wasn’t on their side, as Tenorio iced the game with four free throws before Macklin put an exclamation point with a thunderous slam.

“Mark just shone in the last minutes of the fourth. ‘Yung import ayaw magpalabas, si Mark ayaw magpalabas. ‘Yung puso ng import namin alam ko pagod na pagod na pero di nagpapalabas at lumalaban talaga kanina,” offered Chua.

Yap finished with 21 points but his usually reliable teammates PJ Simon, Mark Barroca and Marc Pingris were held to a combined 19 markers.

ALSO READ: Wade savors heat taking their place among the greats

Earlier, import Michael Dunigan came through with another dominant performance to help Air21 snap out of a five-game losing funk with a 106-94 victory over struggling GlobalPort.

Fresh from a conference-best 40 points in a stinging 88-89 loss against Meralco last Wednesday, Dunigan threw his full weight around the Batang Pier with a game-high 35 points, 12 coming in the payoff canto, plus 20 rebounds for the Express, who improved to 2-5.

“At least with this victory, it eases the pain a little from our previous games,” stated a relived Air21 coach Franz Pumaren. “It was disappointing, our past few games, when we lost down the stretch. This time we finished strong.”

Mark Isip, Mike Cortez and Wynne Arboleda backstopped Dunigan with 12 markers each as the Express overcame a late-charge by the Batang Pier along with the debut of their new import Walter Sharpe.

The 6-foot-9 Sharpe, taking the mantle from the defense-minded Justin Williams, finished with 24 points and nine rebounds while Gary David had 20 markers but those still failed to stop GlobalPort from dropping to the cellar with its fifth straight defeat and sixth overall in eight outings.

Trailing majority of the way, nine combined points by Sharpe and David pulled GlobalPort within 87-91 midway in the fourth but the 6-foot-10 Dunigan was simply too much.

Pouncing on the disqualification of Japeth Aguilar due to foul woes plus Sharpe’s absence due to suspected cramps, Dunigan wrought havoc in the paint and helped the Express maintain their lead at 97-91, time down to just 3:03.

After a free throw by Sharpe cut their deficit to just five, Arboleda drilled in a dagger of trey, virtually taking the wind out of the Batang Pier’s sails for a 102-94 cushion with 1:25 to go.

“With this game we’re back in the hunt. Hopefully, we can sustain this,” added Pumaren.
     
 
First Game
 
AIR 21 (106) – Dunigan 35, Isip 12, Cortez 12, Arboleda 12, Omolon 9, Wilson 8, Canaleta 8, Ritualo 6, Custodio 4, Atkins 0, Baclao 0.

GLOBALPORT (94)
– Sharpe 24, David 20, Mandani 13, Miller 12, Mercado 8, Aguilar 6, Aljamal 4, Salvador 4, Yee 3, Antonio 0.
Quarterscores: 23-15, 47-50, 78-71, 106-94
 
Second Game
 
GINEBRA (96) – Caguioa 25, Macklin 20, Mamaril 13, Tenorio 12, Ellis 11, Raymundo 6, Labagala 4, Baracael 4, Maierhofer 1.

SAN MIG COFFEE (88)
– Bowles 25, Yap 21, Devance 13, Pingris 11, Mallari 4, Barroca 4, Simon 4, De Ocampo 4, Najorda 2, Gaco 0.
Quarterscores: 24-17, 48-35, 67-58, 96-88

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • US affirms 'ironclad' promise to defend Philippines
    US affirms 'ironclad' promise to defend Philippines

    US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter told his Philippine counterpart on Wednesday that Washington's pledge to defend the Pacific nation remains "ironclad" and called for an end to land reclamation in the South China Sea, officials said. In talks in Hawaii with Voltaire Gazmin, Philippine secretary of national defense, the Pentagon chief "reaffirmed" the strong ties between the two countries and discussed territorial disputes in the contested waters of the South China Sea, where Beijing has been …

  • Philippine, Vietnam troops play sports on disputed island
    Philippine, Vietnam troops play sports on disputed island

    Filipino and Vietnamese troops played football and tug-of-war on a disputed South China Sea island on Wednesday, officials said, closing ranks as their rival China ramps up construction of artificial islands. The games took place on Philippine-held Northeast Cay, just 2.7 kilometres (1.7 miles) from Southwest Cay which is controlled by Vietnam, where a similar contest was held last year. "It was a navy-to-navy confidence-building engagement," Vice Admiral Alexander Lopez, the Philippine …

  • ‘Inland areas could be exposed to tsunami-like waves’
    ‘Inland areas could be exposed to tsunami-like waves’

    While strong earthquakes cause tsunamis in coastal areas, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) warned that inland areas could also be exposed to tsunami-like waves, or seiche, if located near or around bodies of water. In a recent earthquake awareness seminar in Muntinlupa, Phivolcs supervising science research specialist Joan Salcedo explained that a seiche is a large wave similar to a tsunami, triggered by strong ground shaking from an earthquake or volcanic …

  • China gives ‘gentle reminder’ to Phl, warns small nations
    China gives ‘gentle reminder’ to Phl, warns small nations

    China gave the Philippines a “gentle reminder” last Tuesday that Beijing will not bully small countries but warned these nations not to make trouble willfully and endlessly. “Here is a gentle reminder to the Philippines: China will not bully small countries, meanwhile, small countries shall not make trouble willfully and endlessly. The Chinese Foreign Ministry also said that China would continue to build other civilian facilities on relevant maritime features in the disputed Spratly Islands …

  • Back-channel diplomacy pushed for Phl-China dispute
    Back-channel diplomacy pushed for Phl-China dispute

    The Philippines should consider backchannel diplomacy to prevent its territorial dispute with China from deteriorating further, Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said yesterday. There are a lot of Filipino businessmen with businesses in China and they have friends and connections there. Let’s utilize that, ask them to talk to their friends on how we can resolve this matter peacefully,” Marcos said. …

  • Phl, Japan to deepen ties amid China sea claims
    Phl, Japan to deepen ties amid China sea claims

    Japan and the Philippines are set to bolster security ties when President Benigno Aquino visits Tokyo next week, the latest move by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to beef up cooperation with Southeast Asian nations facing China’s growing naval ambitions. The two sides will likely agree to start talks on a framework for the transfer of defense equipment and technology and to discuss a possible pact on the status of Japanese military personnel visiting the Philippines to facilitate joint training and …

  • Phl, Vietnam troops play soccer on disputed isle
    Phl, Vietnam troops play soccer on disputed isle

    Vietnamese and Philippine troops played soccer and sang karaoke on a South China Sea island yesterday in a sign of the growing security ties between the two Southeast Asian nations most at odds with Beijing over the contested waterway. Cooperation has blossomed between Hanoi and Manila since they shelved decades of enmity over their competing claims in the Spratly archipelago to try to counter China, whose creation of artificial islands in the region will allow it to project power deep into …

  • Noy swears in 50 newly appointed AFP officers
    Noy swears in 50 newly appointed AFP officers

    President Aquino administered yesterday the oath taking of 50 newly appointed generals and officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in a simple ceremony at the Rizal Hall of Malacañang Palace. …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options