NLEX can’t seem to get a break.
The Road Warriors dropped their seventh game in a row after losing to Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, 101-92, in the 2017 Oppo PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Wednesday at the Cuneta Astrodome.
NLEX remains winless in the conference, while the Kings notched their third consecutive victory after losing their first game.
The Road Warriors were up by a hairline at the end of the first half, 48-47, but struggled defensively in the succeeding 24 minutes. Behind the scoring of LA Tenorio and Joe Devance, Ginebra overturned the one-point deficit into a 20-point lead at the 2:40 mark of the third quarter.
Tenorio and Devance teamed up for 15 of the Kings’ 42 points and also got ample help from Justin Brownlee and Chris Ellis. By the time the period ended, Barangay Ginebra was already up by 27 points.
The Road Warriors tried to claw their way back into the game, but Ginebra had an answer for every basket. NLEX managed to trim the lead down to single digit late in the fourth period, but the outcome of the game had already been decided.
“I was pleased with the way we came out in the second half. We pretty much took care of business in the third quarter,” Barangay Ginebra coach Tim Cone said after his team bagged the win.
“NLEX is gonna win some games, they’re gonna beat some people. We just made sure it wasn’t going to be against us tonight.”
Cone was also impressed with his import’s performance after Brownlee dropped 12 of his 18 points in the pivotal third period. Brownlee also ended the game with 13 rebounds, five assists and three steals.
“When Justin gets into a rhythm, we all seem to find our rhythm. I also liked the way he came out with a lot more fire in the second half and got things done.”
Devance and Tenorio, who both were responsible for Ginebra’s third-quarter explosion, scored 18 and 13 points, respectively. Japeth Aguilar added 17 points and five boards.
“It was a key game for us to win. We needed it for the standings and try to get some momentum, especially coming from a long break,” Cone added.
Wayne Chism paced NLEX with 16 points and eight rebounds, while Rabeh Al-Hussaini and Sean Anthony had 14 and 11 points, respectively.
GINEBRA 101 – Brownlee 18, Devance 18, Aguilar 17, Tenorio 13, Ellis 9, Thompson 5, Mercado 5, Taha 4, Cruz 4, Ferrer 3, Marcelo 2, Caguioa 2, De Guzman 1, Helterbrand 0, Jamito 0, Mariano 0
NLEX 92 – Chism 16, Al-Hussaini 14, Camson 11, Lastimosa 8, Anthony 6, Khobuntin 6, Rios 5, Soyud 5, Alas 4, Baracael 4, Lanete 4, Guinto 3, Monfort 3, Tiongson 3, Villanueva J. 0
Quarterscores: 27-28; 47-48; 89-62; 101-92
– Barangay Ginebra has won 14 of its last 16 games at Cuneta Astrodome, dating back to Game 2 of the 2011 PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals against TNT.
– NLEX is now on an 11-game losing streak dating back to last conference. Coach Yeng Guiao is in his longest losing streak since the 1995 season with Pepsi (13 in a row).
– LA Tenorio played in his 497th consecutive game. He has never missed a game since he entered the league in 2006.
Barangay Ginebra – April 23 vs. TNT KaTropa at Smart-Araneta Coliseum
NLEX – May 3 vs. Blackwater Elite at Smart-Araneta Coliseum