Kangkong no more as Justin Brownlee’s buzzer beating 3 point shot ended Ginebra’s 8 year title drought

With 5.5 seconds to go in the final quarter, no other player deserve to take the winning shot other than Justin Brownlee.

And Brownlee delivered the dagger, as he hit the game winning 3 point shot that ended the 8 year title drough of Ginebra.

Ginebra opened the 3rd canto with a bang to erase a 13 point lead by Meralco. LA Tenorio, who was named Finals MVP catalpulted the run by scoring 21 of his 25 points in the 2nd half. But the man of the moment was Justin Brownlee who delivered the last 7 points of Ginebra. Bronwlre ended up with 31 points.

Meralco had a chance to grab the lead and possile winning the game but their import, Allen Durham was just unable to convert on an easy layup. That shot will hunt Durham for a very long span of time.

Merlaco was led by Chris Newsome and Allen Durham with 19 and 15 points apiece.

The scores:

GINEBRA 91 – Brownlee 31, Tenorio 25, Thompson 10, Aguilar 7, Caguioa 6, Helterbrand 5, Ellis 4, Marcelo 3, Cruz 0, Devance 0, Mercado 0.

MERALCO 88 – Newsome 19, Durham 15, Hugnatan 12, Alapag 8, Faundo 8, Uyloan 7, Amer 6, Hodge 6, Nabong 4, Caram 3.

Quarterscores: 18-27, 32-45, 65-66, 91-88

Photo credits to Eugene Tabucol

Joe Devance: Ginebra’s Unsung Hero in the Finals

Joe Devance can be a starting forward in any PBA team but his role in Ginebra was different.

In eliminations, quarterfinals and semifinals JDV was not in his usual self as his minutes and scoring goes down.

Also in the first 3 games of the Finals, Joe wasn’t able to get his groove offensively but in their last two game, he was just killing Merlaco silently.

In game 4 JDV sank a tough fall away jumper with 25 seconds left in the game and it helps Ginebra to tie the series.

Today, he started for Tim Cone (maybe for match up purposes) and he does what he needs to do and that is to control the game silently for ginebra.

He finished the game with 11 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. He also made some big shots in the 4th quarter when Meralco is trying to make a comeback.

If Ginebra wants to finish the series on Wednesday, JDV will play a big factor for them.

On Fire!

What a Game 5. Ginebra came out of the gates scorching hot burning Meralco early on in what could have been one of their best starts in the series, it seems that the Gin Kings can’t do anything wrong hitting jumper after jumper, running hard on every break and trowing crisp passes, highlighting it with a strong slam-dunk by Justin Brownlee over Al-Hussaini, ending the half with a 54-39 lead over the Bolts. To the Bolts credit they did finish the half strong with another clutch Reynel Hugnatan 3. 

In the start of the 2nd half Allen Durham become doubly aggressive making a bunch of points in the paint, ” Nangalabaw” is what I would use like to call this . His Gins counterpart did not fell off too far as both imports showed up tonight exchanging baskets with the help from locals Japeth Aguilar, (16pts) , Sol Mercado and LA Tenorio. 
In the 4th Meralco kept on inching closer to the Ginebra lead, It also saw 3 defensive gems by the 2 teams, Cliff Hodge and Durham provided excellent help to Hugnatan, as Brownlee blew past him, but  was met in the ring by Hodge and Durham both getting a piece of Brownlee’s shot. Another spectacular defensive exchange would be witnessed. As Durham was making a move to the basket Japeth Aguilar made an impressive block swating the ball from behind the Bolts import almost looking like the Lebron James chase -down in the NBA Finals, but Durham quick to recover swats away a Tenorio Layup on the other end, LA looking as though he had a clear path to basket was met in front of the ring by the Meralco import. 
Just as Meralco was making their move in the final stages of the 4th quarter -Sol Mercado hits a timely three pointer putting the Bolts at bay winding down the last 2 minutes. 
The biggest non call of the finals happen after this, as Sol Mercado lost control of the basketball seemed have hoped two steps with the ball getting locked between his right arm and hips. Replays prove this to be correct and coach Norman Black was livid, this non call led to dagger 3 point basket by GSM rookie sensation Scottie Thompson securing their win and ending Meralco’s hopes for a comeback.
It was one of the best games of the series as both team’s not giving up till the last minute. The 2 teams will have 2 days to regroup before game 6 tips off on Wednesday.
Photo by:
Cynthia Pedrosa

1 win away from the crown as Ginebra outlasted Meralco in Game 5

8 year championship drought might end on Wednesday as Ginebra Gin Kings outlasted Meralco Bolts 92 – 81 and take a commanding 3 – 2 series advantage.

Ginebra started the game like a house on fire as they were able to establish a huge 21 point lead mid 2nd quarter.

But Meralco was able to cut the lead several times into a single digit in the third quarter and come in close distance to Ginebra.

The final quarter was a helter skelter as Meralco tried to make a huge comeback. They were able to reduce the lead into 5 points but a clutch 3 points from Sol Mercado and Scottie Thompson sealed the deal for Ginebra.

Meralco though had a big chance of inching closer but the referee failed to see the travelling violation made by Sol Mercado with a minute to go which Ginebra converted to a 3-point.

Ginebra was led by Justin Bronwlee and Japeth Aguilar with 29 points and 16 points while Meralco was led by Allen Durham and Reynel Hugnatan with 20 and 17 points respectively.

The scores:

GINEBRA 92 – Brownlee 29, Aguilar 16, Devance 11, Caguioa 8, Mercado 8, Tenorio 7, Thompson 5, Cruz 2.

MERALCO 81 – Durham 20, Hugnatan 17, Hodge 10, Newsome 10, Alapag 8, Uyloan 6, Al-Hussaini 4, Amer 4, Nabong 2, Caram 0, Faundo 0.

Quarterscores: 33-19, 54-39, 73-59, 92-81

PBA announced their plan of cancelling game 5 of the finals if Typhoon Karen intensifies.

After game 4 which tied the series of Barangay Ginebra San Miguel and Meralco Bolts, the game 5 of the PBA finals on Sunday might be cancelled by the PBA management due to typhoon Karen.

PBA Management has yet to confirm if it will be moved but the they told the media that they will have it announced on Sunday 9am. Typhoon Karen is expected to affect the whole Metro Manila on Sunday according to forecast. While the PBA office is still monitoring the weather and if there will be any change on the typhoon track everyone was advised especially those ticket holders to standby and wait for their announcement.

It’s an anticipated sold out Sunday again and PBA management took a step ahead to make sure that all the PBA fans, teams, media people and all that will be in the venue are safe. We (powcast.net) will also be updating everyone if there’s any development about this tentative cancellation once we get an information from the league’s office.

Justin Brownlee’s 42 points went down the drain as Ginebra gets their second loss of the series

Photo by PBA Media

It’s another tight game witnessed by PBA fans as Meralco Bolts and Barangay Ginebra San Miguel went face to face for the third time in the best of seven series finals. Meralco Bolts exploded find it hard to execute their drawn plays on the court with the tight Ginebra defense making it a see-saw match in terms of points per quarter but.

Justin Brownlee carried the whole Ginebra team with his own variety of points production in and out of the paint. The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel reinforcement had one of his greatest games in the PBA by scoring multiple three point shots and inside the paint penetrations but single handedly drive the whole team to get the must win game in the series.

The rookie of the year candidate Chris Newsome steered his way to get a big night game by listing 22 points during the most crucial moments of the 2nd half. With the help of the outside shooting of Reynel Hugnatan and Jimmy Alapag, the Meralco bolts gets their biggest lead of the game at 9 points but quickly snatched out of their way as Ginebra played a great match up phase. Ginebra found their way at the back seat because of multiple foul troubles including Sol Mercado who mans the Meralco Bolts import Allen Durham while Japeth Aguilar who is one of the main front liners of Ginebra.

The 42 points production of Brownlee was enough to dagger a win for Ginebra as he was able to knock down a shot far  beyond the arc during the last moments in the 4th quarter but with lack of locals support, the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel ended up losing the game resulting to a 1-2 win loss record in the finals series.

Meralco and Ginebra is expected to face again tow accomplish a mission of getting the crown in this season ending conference on Friday 8:10pm at the Smart Araneta Center after The Leo’s awarding ceremony at 7pm.

Hugnatan hits The Dagger

Game 3 was a treat  to the PBA’s fans where it opened up with a scoring exchange from each teams’ import. Meralco’s Durham and GSM’s Brownlee both scored 20 each in the opening quarter. Durham points were made during the flow of offense but Brownlee had to make hard, challenged shots.
The game was action packed as both teams made runs of their own, there was a certain play where Jonathan Uyloan was called for a flagrant foul on Scottie Thompson, replays show that the GSM Rookie sold the call making a little flop so officials can notice. In the 3rd quarter we saw the return of Chris Ellis to the surprise of many as he was sidelined for games 1 and 2 due to a groin injury. He did provide instant offense as he started with a quick basket plus the foul. It seems that Tim Cone’s gamble on Ellis would pay off as Ginebra was getting a momentum shift but after a series of fast baskets from the Gin Kings, Meralco came back strong finishing the 3rd quarter with a three point shot from Alapag, followed  by a Newsome dunk as LA Tenorio beats the 3rd quarter buzzer and hits a runner. In the final quarter it was the Bolts three point shooting that carried the load for Meralco as Ginebra stayed with them with tenacious offensive rebounds and follow ups. But when you think the Gins Kings would make a comeback Jimmy Alapag hits clutch 3 point baskets one after the other as they extend their lead going in the final minutes of play. Reynel Hugnatan would provide a dagger 3 point with only 42.2 seconds left, although Justin Brownlee hits a 3 pointer from Steph Curry range to keep GSM’s hopes alive it would not be enough as Meralco takes Game 3 and a 2-1 series lead in the Finals.
The Bolts are just 2 wins away from their first ever PBA title, Ginebra hopes to bounce back as each team seems to win right after the other, it is crucial for them to recover and not fall 3 games to one as many would know the odds are not in favor to teams down 3-1. They must solve Meralco’s 3 point shooting and not let their defines be caught napping at open shooters.
While the Bolts prepares to build on this momentum and tries to secure a commanding lead come Game 4 .
This series has all the ingredients to be a classic.

Photo by Aldrin Alejo

Meralco retakes series lead at 2-1 beyond Durnham, Hugnatan’s heroics

Allen Durnham and Reynel Hugnatan led the Meralco Bolts to take the series lead again at 2-1, in the PBA Governor’s Cup finals at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday, October 12.

Durnham, who was shut down by the Kings in game two after a monstrous output in game one, paced the Bolts with 36 markers and 20 boards double-digit outcome, including his two free throws that decided the winner of game three.

Furthermore, Reynel Hugnatan, who performed fantastically in the court to back up Durnham, shone again with his perfect shooting from the arc, including a three that gave the Bolts enough space to keep the momentum on their side in the dying seconds of the game.

In the first half, Ginebra started big but Meralco attempted to cut it down as Jonathan Uyloan swished a big trey to give Meralco a 31-30 lead, and then Durnham and Newsome took over in doing the rest of the damage.

But the crowd-favorite Ginebra squad bounced back in the third frame and sparked a 7-0 run to tie the game at 51-all, and continued with a 8-5 run to steal the lead over Meralco, 59-56.

Both teams exploded in the fourth quarter, but the Bolts were able to find the perfect winning rhythm as they put some crucial shots at the right time, especially for Reynel Hugnatan, who shone again after his life-saving triple to stop a run established by Kings import Justin Brownlee.

Aside from Hugnatan, rookie Chris Newsome led the locals in the Bolts’ side with 22 points.

On the other hand, Ginebra import Justin Brownlee was the only one to score beyond 20s with 42 points.

Game four is set on Friday, October 14, at the Big Dome.

Coach Tim suprised Sol Mercado with his defensive assignment just right before the start of Game 2

If you say import, he must be matched up against another import or a legit bigman in PBA. But in case of Ginebra, it was different.

After exploding for 46 points in Game 1, Allen Durham was contained for only 22 points in almost 41 minutes of playing time.

He was not guarded by Justin Brownlee (Import of Ginebra) or not even Japeth Aguilar. He was mainly guarded by the 6’0 feet tall Sol Mercado.

Sol gives away 6+ inches in terms of height but it seems that Durham was uncomfortable facing Sol as he shoot only 10 out of 24 shots.

But this defensive assignment was extremely suprising for Sol as he only knew it before the game.

“I was suprised actually, Coach Tim told me before the game that I’m going to guard Allen and I just took the challenge. From the beginning I started with Durham, just trying to get him out of his spots. I tried fronting him and run him out of the perimeter, he’s a good player”, Mercado said after they won 82 to 79 in Game 2 of the Finals.

Also Coach Tim Cone said that “You’ve gotta give the credit to Sol, He’s our MVP tonight.”

Ginebra fend off Meralco’s late rally to tie the series at 1 game apiece.

Ginebra collapsed late again but this time they survived a gritty Meralco Bolts, 82 to 79.

A late follow up by Sol Mercado saves Ginebra for being down 2 games in the ongoing PBA Finals. 

Ginebra build a 15 point lead midway of the 3rd quarter but Meralco made a hugh behind Cliff Hodge and Allen Durham’s heroics. They was able to take a 2 point lead with 2 minutes  left in the ball game but Justin Brownlee and Sol Mercado came to rescue.

Justin Brownlee finished the game with 32 points, 2 rebounds and 3 assists while the Best Import of the Conference can only produce 22 points and 15 rebounds after exploding for 46 points in Game 1.

The virtual best of five will continue on Wednesday, 7pm at Araneta Coliseum.

Box Score:
GINEBRA 82 – Brownlee 32, Mercado 12, Caguioa 10, Tenorio 9, Thompson 9, Aguilar 6, Devance 2, Helterbrand 2, Cruz 0, Marcelo 0.

MERALCO 79 – Durham 22, Hodge 16, Newsome 10, Hugnatan 9, Nabong 6, Amer 4, Caram 4, Alapag 3, Uyloan 3, Faundo 2.

Quarterscores: 24-21, 43-44, 69-60, 82-79

3 important things for Ginebra to win game 2 of the PBA Finals

Game 1 slip in the hands of Ginebra via OT loss to Meralco. Here are the 3 important things for them to tie the series.

1. Defense: Defense is one of the best weapon of Ginebra coming into game 1. Ranked number 1 in that category in the playoffs. That defense was not there in game 1, allowing Meralco to score 114 points. If they want to manage to tie the series, they need to tighten up their D.

2. Justin Brownlee: Argueably one of the best import in the conference. But it was not evident in game 1 as he was outplayed by Allen Durham. Brownlee managed to score 17 points only, a far cry of his average. He needs to be aggressive attacking and defending Allen Durham.

3. Scottie Thompson: The priced rookie from Digos, Davao del Norte and the hero of their Game 5 win against SMB. This kid should stay aggressive offensively and defensively if they want to win Game 2.

Durnham’s 46 shoulder Bolts to draw first blood over Ginebra

Meralco has defied the odds to take the first win of the Best-of-Seven finals bout against Ginebra.

And it was all because of Allen “AD” Durnham.

Durnham provided the spark for Meralco, tallying an electrifying 46 points, 13 rebounds, and seven assists to lead the Bolts to escape the crowd-favorite Barangay Ginebra Kings in overtime, 114-109, at the jampacked Smart-Araneta Coliseum, on Friday.

Durnham widened the score gap in the decisive set, cruising an early 7-0 run in the overtime, with rookie Chris Newsome sealing it with two sure shots from the line.

Though majority of the audience were Ginebra fans, the Bolts fought with their hearts, shooting crucial baskets to stay on their winning momentum that Durham had established since the first quarter.

Meralco almost had it all in the fourth quarter after veteran guard Jimmy Alapag hit a dagger three from the left wing, 101-100, but Tenorio later denied the Bolts after stopping their momentum with a turnover from Reynel Hugnatan and hitting a floater with 2 seconds remaining to force an overtime at 102-all.

But AD was just totally unstoppable, still had enough gas to keep going in the overtime period, to formally end the regulation, dismaying the Gin Kings as the Bolts took Game 1 in their very first Finals appearance in the league.

Locals Hugnatan, Newsome and Alapag combined for 45 markers to help Durnham to narrow down the gap that the Kings have made in the mid-third quarter, from 15 points down to only five before they entered the last frame.

On the other hand, Tenorio paced the Kings with 36 points, with 20 coming from the first half, and Justin Brownlee with only 17.

The Game two is set on Sunday, October 9, still at the same venue.

Fans of both sides to go all out on game 1 as Ginebra and Meralco clashes for first blood.

Photo By Aldrin Alejo

We all expect this finals series as a “box office” hit based on how the Ginebra fans have waited for their team to get into the finals and the way the ticket selling goes, it is also expected that this PBA finals series to have a mammoth crowd as game 1 and 2 of this best of 7 series championship got sold out. Ginebra fans are expected to go all out but..

Meralco on the other hand also has this kind of weapon as they are also expected to match the number of attendees to support in every game. Employees of each franchises are also expected to add up to the patrons of this event this series. What’s great about what PBA did in this finals series is they stick to only one venue which is the Smart Araneta Coliseum which makes it easier for people to plan ahead of time and it is the most accessible venue for everyone to go at.

The PBA finals will commence this Friday October 7 at 7pm where Meralco and Barangay Ginebra will try to draw first blood and continue the momentum through out the series. As of this moment, tickets have been sold out for both games 1 and 2 leaving general admission and upperbox still available online and on the venue. TV Ratings are expected to go up as well as TV5 covers this game live for all fans at home which they also call as “Team Bahay”.