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On the eve of his birthday, reigning PBA Most Valuable Player Mark Caguioa scored 24 points, including the marginal baskets, to gift Barangay Ginebra San Miguel with a pulsating 96-93 victory over Alaska Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Caguioa’s floater 43.4 seconds left gave the Gin Kings the lead for good. Alaska had a chance to tie the game, but JVee Casio turned the ball over.
Alaska opted not to foul in the ensuing possession, allowing LA Tenorio to put up a three-pointer. But Ginebra managed to grab the rebound off Tenorio’s miss, forcing Alaska to foul Caguioa with four seconds left.
The hotshot shooting guard split his free throws, but Alaska once again failed to clear the rebound with just a second left. Ginebra inbounded the ball to seal the victory, the Gin Kings’ third straight after five losses.
Billy Mamaril had his best scoring game in the last four seasons with 16 points to go along with his 12 rebounds, as well as a crucial save in the dying seconds to keep the ball alive for Ginebra.
“I think we’re lucky we’re able to sneak out this win. Pahirapan talaga,” said Kings coach Siot Tanquingcen.
“We’re blessed we were able to come out with a win tonight. Lumalamang na ang Alaska but we kept our composure and got back in the game.”
It was a sorry loss for the Aces, who led 80-72 in the fourth quarter on RJ Jazul’s three-pointer. They last took a 93-91 lead on Mac Baracael’s jumper with 1:21 remaining.
Mamaril then tipped in Willy Wilson’s attempt to tie the count at 93-all, before Casio committed two straight turnovers to set up Caguioa’s heroics.
Baracael finished with a team-high 21 points for the Aces, who missed the services of rookie Calvin Abueva due to sickness. Casio added 16 points but was held scoreless in the fourth period as Tanquingcen put the taller Ellis on the Alaska court general.
The victory moved Ginebra back to .500 with a 5-5 win-loss slate. Alaska lost its fourth straight match for a 5-6 card.
Caguioa, who turns 33 on Monday, dedicated the game to Ginebra fans, specially those who put together a celebration for him last Saturday.
GINEBRA 96 – Caguioa 24, Mamaril 16, Ellis 12, Tenorio 10, Espiritu 9, Maierhofer 8, Wilson 6, Hatfield 4, Taha 3, Labagala 2, Helterbrand 2.
ALASKA 93 – Baracael 21, Casio 16, Jazul 10, Espinas 10, Thoss 10, Baguio 9, Hontiveros 7, Eman 6, Reyes 2, Dela Cruz 2, Belasco 0.
Quarters: 21-18, 46-42, 68-73, 96-93
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eto ang mgandang regalong ibinigay sa atin ni Caguioa at ng buong Ginebra Team sa birthday ni THE SPARK!
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Happy birthday idol MC47 lufet mo talaga mr:4th quarter man.spark plug ka talaga sa team.
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happy birthday spark, pango, MC47... :bang:
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