LUCENA CITY, Philippines (UPDATED) - Barangay Ginebra San Miguel cruised past the Meralco Bolts, 102-87, to take Game 1 of the 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup finals here at the Quezon Convention Center Friday, October 13.
Leading by just 6 points heading into the fourth quarter, 77-71, Ginebra rode on a 19-4 run, capped by back-to-back treys from Justin Brownlee and Kevin Ferrer, to break the game wide open and tally its largest lead of the game at 21, 96-75.
Meralco tried to rally back by scoring 8 straight points but the Gin Kings’ lead was too large to overcome.
“We hit our shots and we played well. I thought we controlled the game from pretty much start to finish,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone.
Ginebra imposed its size as it had a 20-rebound advantage and outscored Meralco with 12 more points in the paint.
The Bolts, the league’s number one shooting team, failed to find their rhythm on offense as they buried only 24 percent of their attempts from downtown and shot an atrocious 58 percent from the stripe.
Justin Brownlee was still on fire following his 46-point outburst in their semis series-clinching win over the TNT KaTropa as he dropped 32 points, 19 rebounds and 6 assists on an ultra-efficient 65 percent shooting.
Greg Slaughter, who played his first finals game in the PBA, proved he is a force to be reckoned as he tallied 14 markers, 8 boards and two blocks in only 21 minutes of play.
Allen Durham paced the Bolts with 27 points, 14 rebounds and 7 assists while Baser Amer added 14 markers.
Game 2 will be held on Sunday, October 15, at Araneta Coliseum.
Ginebra (102): Brownlee 32, Aguilar 15, Slaughter 14, Ferrer 11, Tenorio 10, Devance 9, Mercado 7, Caguioa 2, Thompson 2, Aguilar 0, Mariano 0, Taha 0
Meralco (87): Durham 27, Amer 14, Tolomia 10, De Ocampo 8, Hodge 8, Dillinger 6, Lanete 6, Newsome 6, Hugnatan 2, Caram 0
Quarter scores: 29-18, 49-35, 77-71, 102-82. – Rappler.com
Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.