Brgy. Ginebra leaned on a late surge by Stanley Pringle to outlast Rain or Shine, 81-73, Friday night in the quarterfinal round of the 2020 Philippine Cup restart the Angeles University Foundation Sports Arena and Cultural Center in Angeles City, Pampanga.
The 33-year old Fil-Am scored 4 straight points on back-to-back layups to put the Elasto Painters at bay after the Caloy Garcia-mentored squad came to within a point, 72-71, with 4 minutes left on the game clock. Pringle’s baskets ignited a 9-0 run by the Gin Kings which was capped by an LA Tenorio triple to seal the victory and along with it a seat in the semis for the crowd darlings.
“We put the ball on his hands down the stretch and we expect him to close for us. We’re not going to force that every possession because he gets too exhausted and the defense gets too predictable. But down the stretch, we’re going to try to find a way to get him free and allow him to do his thing and that is what he did. If I may just say, we came into this game expecting to grind it out and that was exactly what we got,” said head coach Tim Cone during the post-game press conference.
“It’s always nice to know who you are going to play because you can start preparations. This gives us a chance (to rest), especially in this bubble situation where the games are so fast and guys are worn down,” he added.
Japeth Aguilar led the Gin Kings with 23 points and 11 boards while Prince Caperal and Aljon Marino added 11 markers apiece. Pringle finished with 10 points while LA Tenorio and Scottie Thompson chipped in 8 and 7 markers, respectively.
Brgy. Ginebra will take on the winner of the other quarterfinal pairing featuring San Miguel and Meralco in the best-of-five semis which begins on Wednesday, November 18.
Brgy. Ginebra 81 – J. Aguilar 23, Caperal 11, Mariano 11, Pringle 10, Tenorio 8, Thompson 7, Dillinger 4, Devance 4, Chan 3, Tolentino 0.
Rain or Shine 73 – Borboran 13, Mocon 12, Nambatac 10, Belga 9, Yap 8, Onwubere 6, Wong 6, Ponferada 5, Rosales 2, Arana 2, Norwood 0, Torres 0.
Quarterscores: 20-22; 40-37; 59-55; 81-73.