Kings tie Boosters on top
Mall of Asia Arena
3:00 p.m.- Meralco vs. Barako Bull
5:15 p.m.- Talk ‘N Text vs. Air21
The Barangay Ginebra Kings gained a share of the top spot in the team standings after scoring a 96-89 win over the Alaska Aces in the first game of yesterday’s PBA Philippine Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Kings improved to 7-1 (win-loss), the same record with erstwhile unbeaten Petron Blaze. The Boosters suffered their first setback of the tournament with a painful 99-95 overtime loss to the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters in the second game.
Petron took off to a strong start, and led 51-38 at the bend but the Elasto Painters slowly came back behind the gritty plays of Jervy Cruz (23), Paul Lee (15) and Cebuano JR Quinahan (11).
Fellow Cebuano Junemar Fajardo had another monster game for Petron with 22 points and 16 rebounds but fouled out with 4:01 left to play.
Meanwhile, the Gin Kings made a living from the free throw line to seize control of the game en route to the victory over the Aces, who have yet to win back-to-back games this conference.
The Kings made 30 from the line to take the fight out of Alaska, which struggled after a strong second quarter performance.
While Ginebra had a field day from the free throw area, Alaska only attempted 22 and missed 10 of them.
Alaska’s gunner Cyrus Baguio fouled out inside the final eight minutes and scored just seven points.
Going seven-for-seven from the charity stripe, LA Tenorio collected 24 points, eight rebounds, and six assists to lead the Kings. Japeth Aguilar, who went 11-for-14 from the free throw area, tallied 21 points while another Cebuano big man, Greg Slaughter, chipped in 18.
JVee Casio had a game-high 27 points, while Sonny Thoss stood his ground against the towering combination of Slaughter and Aguilar to finish with 22 points for Alaska, which dropped to 3-6 in the standings.
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